Trump blinked then caved on shutdown

Donald Trump failed to secure funding for a border wall with Mexico for the two years that the republicans held majorities in both Congress and the Senate. He blames the then speaker Paul Ryan (and probably a lot of others).

He seemed to think he could heavy the new Democrat House leadership into funding his wall, so he precipitated a partial Government shutdown and demanded it. And the new House leader Nancy Pelosi wouldn’t budge. If she had given in it would have probably set the scene for ongoing heavy handed demands from Trump.

It resulted in the longest government shutdown ever. Trump, already viewed by a majority unfavourably, started to tank in approval polls.

Pelosi withdrew her invitation to Trump for the annual State Of The Union speech in Congress until after the impasse was resolved. Trump threatened to speak elsewhere, but ended up blinking and postponing it.

The shutdown continued, and the bad press continued, and the polls dipped more.

Then on Friday Trump caved in, for now anyway.

Reuters: Backing down, Trump agrees to end shutdown without border wall money

President Donald Trump agreed under mounting pressure on Friday to end a 35-day-old partial U.S. government shutdown without getting the $5.7 billion he had demanded from Congress for a border wall, handing a political victory to Democrats.

The Republican president’s agreement to end the shuttering of about a quarter of the federal government without securing wall money – an astonishing retreat – came three days after he had insisted, “We will not Cave!”

But Trump vowed that the shutdown would resume on Feb. 15 if he is dissatisfied with the results of a bipartisan House-Senate conference committee’s border security negotiations, or he would declare a national emergency in order to get the wall money without congressional approval.

He has been threatening to declare a national emergency for some time – but if it was actually an emergency why wait? It hasn’t suddenly become an emergency.

With polls showing most Americans blamed him for the painful shutdown – the longest of its kind in U.S. history – Trump embraced a way out of the crisis that Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had been pushing for weeks. The shutdown, which pitted Pelosi against Trump, was her first test since assuming the post three weeks ago.

Democrats remained unyielding in their opposition to a wall, one of Trump’s signature campaign promises that they call ineffective, costly and immoral.

Speaking in the White House Rose Garden on a chilly, sunny winter day, Trump said he would act to ensure that federal workers get their back pay “very quickly, or as soon as possible.”

That’s a change in stance for Trump.

But this doesn’t end the problem, it just postpones it. And it may make Trump’s problems bigger. He had been encouraged into talking and tough on wall funding by some on the hard right, and they are not happy.

Fox News: Ann Coulter rips Trump over border wall on Bill Maher’s show after attacking president via Twitter

Conservative pundit Ann Coulter both blasted and defended President Trump during an appearance on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” on Friday night — hours after she ripped into the president on Twitter for cutting a deal with Democrats to temporarily end the partial government shutdown without funding for his border wall.

Before appearing on the show, Coulter spent a good part of Friday blasting Trump on Twitter for accepting a temporary funding bill to reopen the government without money for the border wall.

“Good news for George Herbert Walker Bush: As of today, he is no longer the biggest wimp ever to serve as President of the United States,” she wrote in a series of tweets.

On the Maher show:

“I promise you the country would be run much better if I had a veto over what Donald Trump is doing. It’s crazy that I expect a president to keep the promise he made every day for 18 months.”

“Why hasn’t Trump been able to get it through for the first two years? Because the Republicans don’t want it.”

“I’m telling you how to get Trump,” Coulter said. “He promised something for 18 months and he lied about it. That’s how you get Trump. It’s not this Russia nonsense.”

This may damage Trump’s core support.

As is his habit Trump claimed some sort of victory on twitter:

“I wish people would read or listen to my words on the Border Wall. This was in no way a concession. It was taking care of millions of people who were getting badly hurt by the Shutdown with the understanding that in 21 days, if no deal is done, it’s off to the races!”

His words on the border wall have been a moving target as he fails to get funding.

He diidn’t care about the millions of people getting hurt by the shutdown when he made it happen – he even claimed that many unpaid workers supported what he had inflicted on them.

This has also inflicted a lot of damage on Trump’s ego. This sort of report won’t help: Art of the cave: Trump folds, finally

The man whose name graces the cover of “The Art of the Deal” called it a compromise, but let’s be clear: His agreement with Democrats to end the punch-yourself-in-the-face government shutdown was a complete capitulation, brought on in a panic when the gears of American air travel began grinding to a halt.

A less pigheaded politician would learn a hard lesson from how the embarrassing standoff backfired; he found himself unable to squirm out of responsibility for a cataclysm he had proudly announced was of his own making.

With Trump, the capacity for evolution is very much an open question. He spent most of his Rose Garden remarks repeating fearmongering tropes, most of them apocryphal, about the urgent need for a 30-foot-high wall along 1,000 miles of southern border.

It would be insane to think that we could be back in the same mess three weeks from now, but remember who sits in the Oval Office.

With Pelosi and the Democrats standing up to him until he blinked then caved. he next couple of years are going to be challenge for Trump, especially if the hard core right also turn against him.

Leave a comment


  1. Gezza

     /  27th January 2019

    Trump having catapulted hundreds of thousands of federal workers into the poorhouse with all sorts of flow-on impacts adversely affecting the livelihoods of millions of others who depend on their spending too, now says I will do everything to make sure you get your salaries & back pay – as tho he thinks he’s their beneficent & kindly boss in his own fking business!

    He screwed them.

    And there’s no guarantee, apparently, that the hundreds of thousands of contractors who work for the affected US government agencies will get any back pay.

    What a moron. Nancy whupped his arse. Everybody knows.

    • Joe Bloggs

       /  27th January 2019

      Three weeks as Speaker and she whupped King Moron’s ass twice, first on SOTU and now on the wall.

      She’s delivered him two big losses and reset Washington’s expectations going forward.

      Pelosi is now the clear leader of the Democratic opposition, and she has shown herself more than trumps equal in a legislative showdown. She has enhanced her standing in her caucus, and he has diminished his standing inside his own. You don’t hear many House Democrats these days grumbling about Pelosi’s leadership. But you hear plenty of Republicans lamenting trump’s.

    • sorethumb

       /  28th January 2019

      All Pelosi had to do was fund the wall. The Democrats don’t care about borders though. The big picture is that Trump had to give in because of air traffic controllers etc but when that is forgotten the reason for Trump voting remains and Pelosi was the problem.

      It’s Nativism: Explaining the Drivers of Trump’s Popular Support

  2. artcroft

     /  27th January 2019

    And all this was so easy to foresee. All hail POTUS Nancy Pelosi.

  3. Joe Bloggs

     /  27th January 2019

    35 days closed down, the people of America held as political hostages to his vanity wall, his support has tanked while Pelosi has grown in stature, no funding for a wall, GOP senators crossing the floor to vote for the Dem clean-open Bill…. nothing good has come out of this trumpian fiasco for the conservatives.

    trump and McTurtle blew this big time.

  4. artcroft

     /  27th January 2019

    I’ve watch Anne Coulter and pat Buchanan employ the argument “The dems are bringing in millions of hispanic voters across the border. The dems are trying to replace the white race in America” several times now. I wonder how deeply this train of thought resonates in the US. Cos if Bubba does believe he is being replaced and that Trump ain’t the answer. Who will he fall in behind next.

  5. Reply
  6. artcroft

     /  27th January 2019

    I wonder how Putin is taking the news.

  7. Joe Bloggs

     /  27th January 2019

    According to Reuters, “The U.S. economy lost at least $6 billion during the partial shutdown of the federal government due to lost productivity from furloughed workers and economic activity lost to outside business, S&P Global Ratings said on Friday.”

    All over a failed vanity project for a failed president.

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  27th January 2019

      How stupid….talk about an own goal. He’s lost more than the wall would have cost.

      I think that if he tries it again in three weeks, all Hell will break loose.

      • So much stupidity – and all at the cost of the American taxpayer.

        Because he has caved now, it will be next to impossible for him to declare a national emergency if talks don’t go his way in 3 weeks time. The constitutional lawyers will have a field day at his expense, to say nothing of the workers hitting the streets and the polls.

        Now there’s a growth industry in DC – lawyering…

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  27th January 2019

          The US has more lawyers per capita than anywhere else, or so it seems.

          I’d like us to go and poach the air traffic bods.

  8. Joe Bloggs

     /  27th January 2019

    What a debacle President Trump’s shutdown proved to be — what a toddler’s pageant of foot-stomping and incompetence, of vainglory and self-defeat. Mr. Trump tormented public servants and citizens and wounded the country, and, in conceding on Friday after holding the government hostage for 35 days, could claim to have achieved nothing […] He succeeded only in exposing the emptiness of his bully’s bravado, of his ‘I alone can fix it’ posturing. Once upon a time, Mr. Trump promised that Mexico would pay for a wall. He instead made all Americans pay for a partisan fantasy.

    The NYT editorial says what I have said about trump for the past three years. It should be required reading for every one of the MAGABillies who comments here.

  9. Conspiratoor

     /  27th January 2019

    Fang might have a point…

    Fang Xinghai, the vice chairman of the Chinese government’s main securities regulator, offered his assessment of the state of politics in the West.
    “You have to realise that democracy is not working very well,” Fang said. “You need political reforms in your countries.”
    He added that he meant this “with sincerity.”

    • Gezza

       /  27th January 2019

      He added that he meant this “with sincerity.”

      The idiot, c ! Everyone knows if you say that, you’re a lying bloody toad !

      Now I don’t believe him. 😠

  10. Patzcuaro

     /  27th January 2019

  11. Zedd

     /  27th January 2019

    the first smart thing MrT has likely done; listened to others…

  12. Gezza

     /  27th January 2019

    On 1ewes at 6 they mentioned that Trump is already threatening to shut down the government in 3 weeks time if he doesn’t get the funding for his wall. What a farkin plonker, eh? He’ll just rightly get the blame – as he should.

    Nancy’s got him by the short and curlies. She’s got more gonads, presence & cred than that pretentious, smarmy-looking Schumer character. At least she delivers a solid punch.

    WaPo covers the nonsense:
    Another shutdown in 3 weeks? Only if Trump truly owns Republicans
    After more than a month, President Trump has relented and agreed to reopen government without funding for his wall on the southern border. For three weeks.

    After an arduous 34-day shutdown that concluded with staff shortages forcing temporary airport closures on the East Coast, the many people and federal workers who were impacted have to be asking themselves: Will this just happen again on Feb. 15, when the stopgap bill expires?

    The short answer is that nobody knows. Trump is still demanding a border wall, and given his leadership style, there are no guarantees until a deal is actually cut. He seemed to set the stage Friday for simply declaring a national emergency if congressional Democrats don’t agree to fund the wall, but who knows. We didn’t even think the current shutdown would happen until Trump changed his mind at the last minute, after Senate Republicans had already passed a clean government-funding bill.

    You would think that the likes of McConnell, Johnson and Grassley, none of whom were among the six GOP defectors Thursday, would have made their distaste for another shutdown clear to the White House. Another shutdown, after all, would almost definitely just mimic the dynamics we saw toward the end of this one. There would still be no real prospect of success.

    Of course, the reason the government shut down in the first place is because Trump needed to try to get leverage — any leverage — he could for his wall, which has very few prospects otherwise. Taking another shutdown off the table at the start of negotiations over the next three weeks gives Democrats even less reason to make concessions. They know they have less to fear politically if it happens again. So don’t expect Republicans to say there’s no chance of another shutdown, but I’d be surprised if they gave Trump berth to try it again.

    Unless he truly insists upon it — and they are truly terrified of him.

    • Gezza

       /  27th January 2019

      Anne Coulter’s obviously put the shits up Trump, worrying about his base.

  13. sorethumb

     /  28th January 2019

  14. sorethumb

     /  28th January 2019

    What about Trump’s impending impeachment? You mean we only have a shutdown back down?


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