Saturday, September 29, 2018

Up against Wall of a shutdown, Trump wusses out

Sunday is the end of the Federal Fiscal Year, and in typical GOP Congress fashion, they waited for the last minute to keep operations moving for the next 2 1/2 months, with a whole lot of extra money thrown in along the way.

But the bill doesn't include things our manly, "America First" president claimed he had to have. So what's he going to do?
The House on Wednesday evening passed an $853 billion spending bill that does not include money for President Donald Trump’s border wall, but he indicated he would sign it anyway.

“We’re going to keep the government open,” he said after a photo opportunity in New York City, where he is attending the United Nations General Assembly.

That decision means Trump will finish the first half of his term failing to make any progress on his campaign’s most famous promise: the construction of a wall along the southwestern border. For the year and a half of his campaign, he vowed he would build a 30-foot-tall concrete wall and would force Mexico to pay for it....

From that point forward, Trump has been occasionally issuing angry statements on Twitter about the Republican-led Congress not giving him wall money, threatening a veto of a spending bill that fails to fund the wall and — alternatively — falsely claiming that the wall was already under construction.

But given an opportunity to make good on his veto threats, Trump has backed down and instead appears to be going along with congressional Republican leaders’ advice not to shut down the government just weeks before the midterm elections.
It was always a metaphorical "wall" anyway, right MAGAts? #SUCKERS

"Budget Guy" Stan Collender laughed at the fiscally feckless President, and how Trump backed down to Congress. Collender adds that this would have been a great time for Trump to push for priorities like his Wall, adding funds for infrastructure, defunding Planned Parenthood, or whatever else Don the Con was promising the rubes this week.
...when faced with the opportunity this week to veto the legislation that didn’t provide any money for his wall and actually to shut down the government, Trump ran from the fight he had been threatening so loudly for so long. While he was 250 miles away from Capital Hill in New York, Trump meekly said he would avoid the confrontation with Congress and sign whatever he was sent.

In other words, Donald Trump is a federal budget wuss.

This was a not strategic retreat by the White House. If anything, it’s going to be even harder for Trump to get what he wants on spending and taxes in a lame duck session than it was before. This was his best chance.

This is especially true of funding for his wall. Congress has already refused multiple times to provide the funds Trump wants and that isn’t likely to change after the election. That’s particularly true if the Democratic wave many are predicting actually happens and Trump’s policies become even less important to Republicans.

It’s also true of Trump’s other budget priorities. The two “minibus” appropriations that Trump’s signature will enact will provide funding for the full fiscal year and include the majority of the spending the president gets to approve. Trump simply won’t be able to have that much of an impact on what’s left even if he tries.
Like with a lot of other Republicans (hi, Scott Walker!), Donald Trump can't seem to connect his big talk to actual policy that can work in the real world without wrecking a lot of other stuff in the process.

And on a related note, if Dems do win at least one house of Congress (if not both!) in 38 days, they might be wise to put Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell up against walls of their own before the December 8 shutdown, and say "No funny business before we take over, or we shut it all down right before Christmas, and won't open it until we get in after New Year's." And the increasingly shrinking president won't have any political authority or support to do anything in response.

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