Donald Trump faces a potential government shutdown looming over him, owing to his unmet demands to win $5 billon for his long-promised border wall.
Trump, speaking with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer last week, declared he would be “proud” to shut down the government in his effort to secure the nation’s borders. “I am proud to shut down the government for border security,” Trump said to the Democratic pair. “I will take the mantle. I will be the one to shut it down, I’m not going to blame you for it.”
It was a claim both Democratic figureheads described as a victory for them. And on Tuesday, the White House backpedaled on Trump’s position. Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, speaking with Fox News, admitted, “At the end of the day, we don’t want to shut down the government, we want to shut down the border.”
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Republicans, as a whole, don’t want a government shutdown, partially because then federal employees would be without pay in the days leading up to Christmas. Republicans also don’t want to see their party blamed for a shutdown. According to a USA Today poll, 43 percent of United States citizens would blame Trump and Republicans for a shutdown should one pass.
The GOP unsuccessfully attempted to get the president to pass a bill that would fund the government until when the Democrats reclaim the House on January 3. Moreover, the White House has not been communicating with Senate Republicans, leaving Mitch McConnell without support.
“[Trump’s] temper tantrum will get him a shutdown,” Schumer expressed on Monday. “But it will not get him the wall.”