Voters Reject Republican Spin On Government Shutdown

20 January, 2018, 05:10 | Author: Courtney Perry
  • Senate Minority Leader Schumer speaks after the Democratic policy luncheon on Capitol Hill in Washington

US President Donald Trump appeared to undercut his party's attempts to reach a budget deal with Democrats, on the eve of a possible government shutdown.

When the government shuts down, which has only happened three times in a meaningful way since 1995, hundreds of thousands of "non-essential" federal workers may be put on furlough, while "essential" employees, dealing with public safety and national security, would keep working. "We do not want a shutdown".

Funds for the federal government run out at midnight, and without a last-minute breakthrough in negotiations it appears that the GOP doesn't have the votes to keep the lights on as dawn breaks on the first anniversary of Trump's January 20th inauguration.

Partisans traded dueling hashtags on Twitter: #SchumerShutdown vs. #TrumpShutdown.

White House budget director Mick Mulvaney put the odds of a shutdown at "50-50".

All national security and military personnel deemed "essential" would continue to report to work, but they wouldn't get paid.

Trump had planned to leave D.C. for his Mar-A-Lago resort in Florida on Friday afternoon, and has a major campaign fundraiser scheduled for Saturday. The Senate is now just hours away from an entirely avoidable government shutdown. But according to CNN, the Trump administration has already come up with a potential solution: if an agreement is reached, the president will just send a tweet announcing that everything's cool now.

The president fired back at Democrats during a trip to Coraopolis, Pennsylvania, arguing they're pushing for a shutdown to distract voters from the GOP's tax cuts.

While decrying Democrats, it was Trump, a self-styled master dealmaker, who seemed to throw the negotiations into a final crisis and riled Democratic opposition against him. So, who should take the blame? "Let's fund the government for a full month, so we can actually get something done".

Earlier, the US House of Representatives passed a Republican-led bill aimed at avoiding a government shutdown. He's improved 7 points among independents, with much of that shift coming among those who lean Republican, and gained 10 points among ideological conservatives.

"I have to laugh when people say that, 'Oh, we control the House, the Senate, the White House, why can't you get this done?' You know as well as anybody that it takes 60 votes in the Senate to pass an appropriations bill", Mulvaney said in response to a briefing question from CNN's Jim Acosta.


Trump invited Schumer to the White House for talks as a stopgap bill to fund the federal government through February 16 appeared headed to defeat in the Senate, where Democratic votes are needed to pass it.

This would be the fourth short-term budget measure to squeeze through a gridlocked Congress since the fiscal year began in October. Whoever works for agencies and departments that are considered nonessential, including agencies that pay out small business loans and process passport requests, will cease to work until Congress is able to agree on a bill for the federal budget.

He mischaracterized the dispute as something that could shut down "the country", not just parts of the government. He then met with House minority leader Nancy Pelosi and fellow democratic Senator Richard Durbin to brief them on the meeting.

"I think we should go home, we've done our job", said Representative Chris Collins, a Republican from NY.

GOP Sen. Thom Tillis said he was open to any solution that prevented a shutdown. Because now he is now saying 'never mind, I didn't mean it, ' and is himself calling for an even shorter, short-term funding bill.

Polling suggests Republicans and Trump will catch the lion's share of the blame.

On Capitol Hill, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said he hoped to vote on the House-passed bill "soon", and he said Americans at home would be watching to see "which senators make the patriotic decision" and which "vote to shove aside veterans, military families and vulnerable children to hold the entire country hostage. until we pass an immigration bill".

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he won't schedule a vote on any compromise legislation extending protections for the immigrants brought to the USA illegally as children until he has a clear indication that Trump would support it.

"This is completely unfair and uncompassionate for my Democratic colleagues to filibuster government funding, harm our troops, and jeopardize health coverage for nine million children because extreme elements of their base want illegal immigration to crowd out every other priority". At the time, Trump told Fox & Friends that the ultimate blame for a shutdown lies at the top.

That makes Republican talking points - that this is a Democratic shutdown - pretty hard to believe.

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