Monday, July 30, 2018
Trump Threatens To Shut Down The Government
The federal government is only funded through the month of September. If a new budget is not passed by Congress and signed by the president by September 30th, the federal government will shut down on October 1st. But here is what Trump tweeted on Sunday:
“I would be willing to ‘shut down’ government if the Democrats do not give us the votes for Border Security, which includes the Wall!”
That's right. Trump is threatening to shut down the federal government if Congress doesn't give him the $20 to $25 billion he needs to build a wall between the United States and Mexico. He has threatened to do that a couple of times in the past, and then backed down. Will he do it this time?
I think there's a 50-50 chance he will actually do it this time. He may be an idiot, but he can read the polls -- and he knows there is a good chance that one (or both) houses of Congress will flip to Democratic control in the coming election. If that happens, he can forget any hope of getting his silly wall. This could well be his last chance to get the money for that wall.
Is Congress likely to give him that wall money? No. The GOP is split and fighting among themselves over the budget, and if a budget is going to be passed, Democratic support is needed. The best Trump can hope for in a new budget is maybe $5 billion to start the wall, and Democrats will only do that if other programs (programs that actually help real people) are protected.
Republican candidates are already facing an uphill battle this November, and the last thing they need is a government shutdown that will anger voters -- especially a shutdown over the border wall (which is opposed by a majority of Americans). I expect they will do their best to talk Trump out of shutting the government down.
Will they succeed? That depends on how much Trump really wants that wall. I think he still thinks he can bully Congress into giving him what he wants -- and that means a government shutdown is a real possibility.