Dianne Feinstein has been getting too much political praise for her Trump Party Trick.

The trick works like this. She gets into a meeting with Trump and sits near him. Then she exploits his confusion about details, and obvious unwillingness to listen to anybody else, to get him to agree to a Democratic policy.

Most recently, she had him talking in favor of an assault weapons ban. Previously, she got Trump to agree orally to a narrow immigration deal that would reckon only with DACA recipients.

That drew praise too. And it created a couple days of bad stories for Republicans, who had to push Trump back to GOP orthodoxy.. But in the end, what changed?

Trump is retreating to NRA orthodoxy on assault weapons. He went back to his anti-immigrant stance, and has done nothing for the Dreamers but put their protections at risk.

If anything, Feinstein’s trick may help Trump. It allows him to project moderation and a willingness to compromise – even when he clearly has little interest in doing so. Feinstein’s playing with him also gives him a bit of bipartisan – and democratic — credibility that is dangerous to hand to a determined authoritarian who doesn’t respect American norms or the constitution.

Yes, it’s hard to put points on the board when your party is in the minority. But Feinstein’s small p.r. victories may only be helping Trump.