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Thread: Record shutdown is a massive Washington failure

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  1. #1
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Record shutdown is a massive Washington failure

    Record shutdown is a massive Washington failure

    Analysis by Stephen Collinson, CNN
    Updated 1:19 AM ET, Sat January 12, 2019

    (CNN) President Donald Trump often boasts he's presiding over a record breaking presidency.

    Now he's got another historic notch on his belt, the longest-ever government shutdown — an impasse that marks a new low for Washington dysfunction.

    The dispute triggered by Trump's demands for billions of dollars to finally make good on an unfulfilled campaign promise — to build a border wall — began so long ago that Republicans had a monopoly on Washington power. The Democratic takeover of the House has deepened the disconnect, and with neither side willing to fold, nearly 22 days in, there is still no end in sight.

    Since Trump crowed he would be "proud" to shutter the government over the wall, he gets to shoulder much of the blame for a crisis that is the inevitable result when the nation's political polarization is institutionalized in Washington.

    The last three weeks have exposed the lack of empathy of a billionaire President who shrugs off the struggles of federal workers who work paycheck to paycheck. Trump is clearly more concerned about a pet political project than his constitutional role of providing governance to all Americans.

    But he is not alone in his dereliction of duty. The Republican-led Senate is doing nothing to offer its President a face saving way out. And while House Democrats are going through the motions of passing bills to reopen government, they don't seem to be doing much else to break the logjam. Before Trump was President, party leaders had seemed at least open to funding a barrier on the border as part of wider immigration legislation.

    Trump urged party leaders Friday to return to Washington and vote for a wall, a barrier or whatever they want to call it -- even "peaches."

    "This is where I ask the Democrats to come back to Washington and to vote for money for the wall, the barrier, whatever you want to call it, it's OK with me," the President said during a White House roundtable on immigration.

    "They can name it whatever. They can name it 'peaches.' I don't care what they name it. But we need money for that barrier," he added.

    The stalemate represents a crucial first fight between Trump and his Democratic enemies in Washington's new era of divided government.

    But every battle has victims. And right now it's 800,000 government workers who feel insulted, forgotten and anxious about rent, mortgage, car payment and medical bills piling up.

    While they fret, nothing is happening in Washington this weekend. In fact, members of Congress, who are getting paid, are off until Monday.

    They might notice as they fly home that the nation's transportation system is under strain. Many of those TSA agents who keep travelers safe are working without pay. An airport in Tampa is opening a food bank for employees. And some food inspections are on hold with government shut down.

    "I would beg both Houses of Congress, I would beg the American people to please look around and understand that federal workers, we have a face — we have families," Jacqueline Maloney, a federal worker whose paycheck didn't arrive on Friday, told CNN's Brooke Baldwin in an emotional interview.

    "We might be a neighbor, your best friend, your best friend's mom, your aunt, your cousin. We are everywhere."

    Government shutdowns usually end when the political leaders caught in the standoff calculate that the political damage sustained by standing firm begins to outweigh the embarrassment of a climbdown.
    With tales of anger and deprivation of government workers stuck in a terrible situation beyond their control now dominating news coverage, that point may be coming closer.

    Neither side however is showing any sign of cracking yet.

    It's on Trump

    But for Trump, there would have been no shutdown. The President, apparently fearing a backlash in conservative media, refused to keep the government open before Christmas unless he got wall funding.

    In the last week, Trump has tried a variety of political stunts to try to shift the blame. He gave an Oval Office address. He stormed out of talks with Democratic leaders. He flew Air Force One to the border to paint an inaccurate picture of hordes of criminals and killers pouring into the country.

    "The only way you will stop it is with a very powerful wall or steel barrier," Trump said at the White House on Friday.

    Now, as he seeks taxpayer cash to build a wall that he promised Mexico would pay for, the President is offering the fact-bending claims that America's neighbor has already settled up -- in a yet to be ratified new trade deal.

    By any conventional measure, Trump is guilty of putting his own political ego above the interests of the Americans he leads. For all the power of his campaign trail rhetoric among supporters, he's not shifted the political needle at all. He seems oblivious that in divided government, a President can't just demand what he wants.

    Trump's supporters argue that there is a genuine crisis on the border and brand as "fake news" any argument that a wall along the frontier with Mexico may not be the best way to tackle drug trafficking and ballooning asylum claims.

    In fact, the wall has become such an emotional center of Trump's relationship with his political base — and such a symbol of antipathy towards the President for those who oppose him — that it's become an insoluble issue.

    And government workers are paying the price.

    "The bottom line is there is no excuse for the political stunt just because the President had made a commitment when he ran for office and afterwards," said Michael Bloomberg, the former New York mayor, in a CNN interview.

    "He cannot get it done and deliver for his constituency. He should just stand up and say I tried and let's get on with the next thing," said Bloomberg, a possible 2020 Democratic presidential candidate. "There's no one issue or one constituency. The President has not been elected to be the representative of a party, or of a small group, he's supposed to be representative of a whole country."

    So far, Trump has held off on his threat to declare a national emergency and reprogram Pentagon funds — possibly from disaster relief projects in Puerto Rico and Texas — to finance his wall.

    Such a step might allow him to declare a victory that most people will believe to be hollow. He might be able to sell his supporters on a battle in the courts after an almost certain legal challenge and reap political capital.

    But it would also represent a fundamental flouting of constitutional governance, since a future president, thwarted by Congress fulfilling its core task of deciding how taxpayer money is spent, could choose to go ahead with a favorite political project regardless.

    Hypocrisy

    The failure of Congress to unpick the deadlock has disgusted some of its most venerable members.
    "How can we resolve this? We owe it to the American people. This is like a circus," Republican Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama said earlier in the week.

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who once boasted that "I'm the guy that gets us out of shutdowns," has been a ghostly presence.

    McConnell has refused to act on Democratic House bills to open various government agencies, since Trump will not agree to sign them.

    For now, McConnell has no desire to open cracks in the Republican coalition by breaking with a President who has leveraged his devoted base to punish any dissidents in his party.

    There could come a time, however, when clear discomfort among some GOP members, like Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner, Alaska's Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Maine's Sen. Susan Collins, begins to make life uncomfortable for McConnell.

    The bitterness of shutdown politics has also revealed a seam of hypocrisy that festers on both sides of the aisle in this fractured political age.

    In 2016, Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham signed on to an amicus brief in a Supreme Court case challenging President Barack Obama's use of executive power to shield recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program from deportation.

    The document complained that Obama's move was an attempt to supplant Congress' power and a threat to the constitutional principle of separation of powers. Those norms seem less important to the South Carolinian now Trump is in the White House.

    "Mr. President, Declare a national emergency NOW. Build a wall NOW," Graham tweeted on Friday after meeting Trump.

    Part of Graham's frustration stems from his belief that Democrats are hypocrites for refusing to contemplate immigration enforcement policies that they have favored in the past.

    Early last year, Democrats and the White House appeared close to a deal that would have given Trump $25 billion in border security in return for a path to citizenship for DACA recipients — undocumented migrants brought to the US illegally as children.

    Trump eventually pulled out of the deal.

    The idea of border fencing, or a wall in some areas, has not been so radioactive for Democrats in the past.

    In 2006, Democrats including now-Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and then-Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama voted to authorize a secure fence along about 700 miles of the US-Mexico border.

    The project was far from the concrete or steel wall envisioned by Trump.

    But given the symbolic potency of the idea of a wall, it's not clear Democrats — who do not want their first act in the majority in the House to be a concession to Trump, would contemplate any such plan today.

    "A wall is an immorality," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said this week.

    https://www.cnn.com/2019/01/12/polit...ory/index.html
    Last edited by Judy; 01-12-2019 at 10:32 AM.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Donald J. Trump
    ‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump
    10m 10 minutes ago

    Democrats should come back to Washington and work to end the Shutdown, while at the same time ending the horrible humanitarian crisis at our Southern Border. I am in the White House waiting for you!
    Mr. President, you need a new strategy. The humanitarian crisis isn't flying. No one in our country gives 2 hoots about what these disgusting illegal aliens from these third world dumps do to each other. We really don't, we know they're awful, it's why we have laws against them entering our country to begin with. The humanitarian crisis if you want to call it that is the human toll of illegal immigration on Americans, which I know you know, and are the first President since Eisenhower to ever do anything about it. But the messaging isn't working fast enough or big enough.

    To me, this shutdown was wrong from the git-go after the Sunday before Christmas. Maybe you understand this better than I do, but so far this isn't a fight, it's a suicide mission.
    Last edited by Judy; 01-12-2019 at 10:55 AM.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Donald J. Trump
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    17m 17 minutes ago

    23% of Federal inmates are illegal immigrants. Border arrests are up 240%. In the Great State of Texas, between 2011 & 2018, there were a total of 292,000 crimes by illegal aliens, 539 murders, 32,000 assaults, 3,426 sexual assaults and 3000 weapons charges. Democrats come back!
    Oh Mr. President, you are so sweet, so hard-working, so sincere, but you don't see or understand who you're dealing with. These are crazy irrational people that Americans elected to control the US House of Representatives. They have no loyalty to the United States, no care or concern for the American Citizen, no sense of responsibility ... you can not reason with them like you could back in the old days when you worked with Schumer and Pelosi on different things. They've been sucked in, they're gone. They're empty shells on the take with the cartels behind this whole travesty of illegal immigration, that's why Pelosi is the biggest fund-raiser of all time for the House Democrats, it's all drug money. I mean look at them on the film of the rebuttal to your national address the other night. Those are 2 scared rabbits, that strangeness is .. fear for their lives, that's why they close down business in DC and go hide out somewhere safe for as long as they do. That's why we have sanctuary cities. It's why law enforcement doesn't want to be involved in arresting and turning in illegal aliens. That's why this whole thing is opposite of what it should and would otherwise be. Maybe they took money not realizing it was drug money and then when they found out, it was too late.

    CIA knows this, FBI knows this, ICE knows this .... they all know. It's why this problem wasn't solved long ago and it's why they hate you so much. It's why we have driver's licenses for illegal aliens, it's why we have in-state tuition for illegal aliens, it's why we have free health care now for illegal aliens in California and New York City, and this whole giant mess called illegal immigration. Every Democrat in Congress and many in the states and local areas took that drug money.

    It's not about "cheap labor", that was just a side benefit, it's about running a $300 billion a year illegal drug business in the US, plus another $100 billion a year in other illegal enterprises, tax free, regulation free, law free, in violation of every related US law on the subjects, for at least 40 years. You're smart, you can do the math, THAT is what and who you're up against.

    DemoQuacks are just the front men and protecters of THAT business.
    Last edited by Judy; 01-12-2019 at 11:21 AM.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Donald J. Trump
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    11m 11 minutes ago

    ....I do have a plan on the Shutdown. But to understand that plan you would have to understand the fact that I won the election, and I promised safety and security for the American people. Part of that promise was a Wall at the Southern Border. Elections have consequences!
    Donald J. Trump
    ‏Verified account @realDonaldTrump
    4m 4 minutes ago

    We have a massive Humanitarian Crisis at our Southern Border. We will be out for a long time unless the Democrats come back from their “vacations” and get back to work. I am in the White House ready to sign!
    So earnest. So sad.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member stoptheinvaders's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Judy View Post
    Record shutdown is a massive Washington failure

    Analysis by Stephen Collinson, CNN
    Updated 1:19 AM ET, Sat January 12, 2019


    Trump's supporters argue that there is a genuine crisis on the border and brand as "fake news" any argument that a wall along the frontier with Mexico may not be the best way to tackle drug trafficking and ballooning asylum claims.

    In fact, the wall has become such an emotional center of Trump's relationship with his political base — and such a symbol of antipathy towards the President for those who oppose him — that it's become an insoluble issue.
    Build the Wall was 3 words, very easy to say, and it was a symbol of so much more. It was a symbol of---we want someone to recognize our country has been and is being invaded, and illegals are being treated better than US Citizens. It was a symbol of we want more than a Wall, we want the freebies to illegals cut off, we want E-Verify, we want a Visa tracking system in place, and so much more. While the Wall is important, it was a Symbol for so much more, but we can't even get the wall, and they aren't even talking about all the other items that was included in that Build the Wall symbol.
    Beezer likes this.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    The Wall is a symbol, you're absolutely right about that. It is a symbol to stop illegal immigration into the US. It wasn't really about a Wall per se, it was about solving the whole problem of illegal immigration and no one has worked harder, more diligently or stuck their neck out more on our behalf than this President. Yet, few seem to appreciate it, I think because they don't know all that he's done to reduce illegal immigration and legal immigration as well. A lot of other things he wanted to do were blocked so far either by Congress or the Courts, so he's working on some important regulatory changes as well that may work out to reduce even more. He's also doing well with possible diplomatic solutions to stop some of it at the source in their home countries.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Judy View Post
    Mr. President, you need a new strategy. The humanitarian crisis isn't flying. No one in our country gives 2 hoots about what these disgusting illegal aliens from these third world dumps do to each other.
    Trump should call it a CRIMINAL crisis because that's what illegals are. They are destroying america and it keeps getting worse. The whole world is trying to dump their poor on the american taxpayer.
    Judy and Beezer like this.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Yes, it's no doubt a criminal invasion, so he should definitely call it a Criminal Crisis. Love that idea, Text Driving Is Deadly!!

    Beezer likes this.
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