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The Democrats Get Trump And The Republicans To Fold, And That Means There NEVER Will Be A Border Wall April 25, 2017

Well, that didn’t take long.  Yesterday I reported that the Democrats were threatening to force a government shutdown if money for a border wall was included in the bill to fund the government, and one day later Donald Trump has unconditionally surrendered.  Despite all of Trump’s promises, a border wall isn’t going to happen at this time, but of course he is pledging to “try again” in September.  But will anything change for the Democrats between now and September?  Of course not.  The Democrats will continue to use these same tactics whenever funding for a border wall comes up, and because Republicans always end up backing down on the most controversial issues that means that there never will be a border wall.

Do you know why the Democrats always get virtually everything that they want?

It is because they have a backbone.

They would have been willing to force a government shutdown that could have lasted for many months just to make sure not a single penny of taxpayer money was allocated for a border wall.

I certainly don’t agree with their principles, but at least the Democrats are willing to stand up for them.

On the other hand, Trump is showing that he is willing to flip flop on just about anything once he meets the least bit of resistance.

And if Trump is willing to give up on his number one campaign promise so easily, what else will he be willing to give up on?  The Huffington Post has compiled an excellent timeline of Trump’s border wall promises right here.  As you can see, he was very bold while he was campaigning, but now according to NBC News he has essentially thrown in the towel on a border wall less than 100 days into his presidency…

President Donald Trump has indicated that he’s willing to back away from his demand that a government funding bill include money to build a wall on the Southern border, a move that could help clear the way for Congress to avoid a shutdown.

A senior administration official tells NBC News that the president is open to obtaining funding for the border wall in the regular appropriations process for 2018 later this year instead of insisting it be included as part of the large spending bill to keep the government’s lights on past this week.

Of course we are being told that building the wall is still “an important priority” for Trump and that the administration will try again in September.  The following comes from Bloomberg

“Building that wall and having it funded remains an important priority to him but we also know that that can happen later this year and into next year, and in the interim you see other smart technology and other resources and tools being used toward border security,” Trump counselor Kellyanne Conway said on Fox News on Tuesday.

But why in the world would the Democrats change their minds and give him funding for a border wall in a few months when they are so vehemently against it right now?

I have to say that I agree with Rush Limbaugh on this one…

“The Democrats seem to have successfully used this stupid, silly threat of a government shutdown to get their way,” Limbaugh said Tuesday, in one of his first major rebukes of the president. “What Trump is saying is if we need to get this done, then I’ll delay the spending on the wall until September. And it’s just a measly billion dollars.”

He continued: “Trump, I’m sure, does not ever think he caves on anything. But outward appearances are what they are. And the bottom line is that if he is willing to withdraw a demand of his for a measly billion dollars for the wall because the Democrats are threatening a shutdown, then the Democrats will have just learned that this threat works on Trump, too, not just all the other Republicans.”

Of course Trump and the Republicans have caved in on defunding Planned Parenthood too.

Actually I don’t think that they ever intended to put up much of a fight.

This is another battle that the Democrats would have been willing to shut down the government indefinitely to win.  They are completely united in their support for Planned Parenthood, and they would have been willing to risk the greatest governmental crisis in U.S. history to get their way.

So even though the Republicans control the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives, the Democrats are winning on big issue after big issue because they back up their convictions with courage.

Yes, there are potentially other ways that the Republicans could sneak the defunding of Planned Parenthood into various pieces of legislation, but because enough Republican members of Congress are “squishy” on this issue it isn’t likely to ever actually happen.

I have said it before, and I will say it again.  If Planned Parenthood was going to ever be defunded, now was the time.

Since the Republicans have chosen not to even put up a fight, that is a very, very ominous sign for our nation.

Just like every single one of the Democrats, any Republican that votes for any bill that includes funding for Planned Parenthood or that signs such a bill is going to be partially responsible for the blood of the countless number of babies that Planned Parenthood slaughters each year.

Unfortunately, most of these gutless Republican politicians seem unwilling to stand up for much of anything these days.  In fact, one Republican member of Congress has openly stated that she is “not going to risk a shutdown over anything”

Republicans will also be content: many members of the GOP had indicated they would be satisfied with a spending bill that included money for means of strengthening security along the border other than a wall. “Border security’s the main issue—whether that includes a wall or technology, drones, or repairing what we have,” Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R., W.Va.) said Monday evening. Ms. Capito said she wasn’t interested in risking a shutdown over the border wall.

“I’m not going to risk a shutdown over anything,” she said.

So the Democrats are going to use the threat of a government shutdown to get their way on these big issues year after year until Republicans finally grow some spines and decide to stand up for themselves.

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Democrats: Trump Must Surrender On Funding For A Border Wall To Avoid A Government Shutdown On His 100th Day In Office April 24, 2017

Is Donald Trump going to unconditionally surrender to the Democrats and completely give up his dream of building a border wall in order to avoid a government shutdown on his 100th day in office?  As I have warned before, the Democrats are perfectly willing to force a government shutdown if the Trump administration and the Republicans in Congress do not let them win all of the key battles in this funding bill fight.  It is being reported that the Trump administration wants 3 billion dollars for extra border security and for construction of a border wall, and the Democrats are insisting that they will keep any bill that includes money for a border wall from ever getting through Congress.  And of course the Democrats are also taking a very hard line on funding for Planned Parenthood, federal support for key Obamacare provisions, and resistance to increased defense spending.  If the Trump administration and enough establishment Republicans in Congress cave in to the outrageous demands of the Democrats, a government shutdown will be avoided.  If not, a government shutdown will begin on April 29th (Trump’s 100th day in office), and it could easily turn out to be the longest government shutdown in the history of the United States.

If Trump gives up on his border wall now, it is quite likely that he will never get it.

Emboldened by this success, the Democrats will simply threaten to block any new bill that contains funding for a border wall in the future.  At some point Trump is going to have to stand up for himself if he ever wants to see his number one campaign promise become a reality, and the longer he waits the less leverage he is going to have.

At this moment, the Trump administration appears to be taking a tough stance on border wall funding, and they have even offered a deal to the Democrats that would trade continued Obamacare payments to insurers for money for a border wall…

Mick Mulvaney, President Trump’s budget chief, said the wall is the administration’s “top priority” for the talks, adding they would support key ObamaCare payments to insurers if Democrats backed the border wall money.

“We’d offer them $1 of CSR payments for $1 of wall payments. Right now that’s the offer that we’ve given to our Democratic colleagues,” Mulvaney said during a Bloomberg Live interview, referring to the ObamaCare payments known as cost-sharing reduction (CSR).

In that same interview, Mulvaney added that “you cannot expect a president who just won [an] election to give up very easily on his highest priority.”

And I certainly agree with Mulvaney.  The border wall was the number one issue that Trump campaigned on, and if he unconditionally surrenders to the Democrats on this issue without much of a fight, it will essentially be the neutering of his entire presidency.

The Democrats seem to know what is at stake, and they are digging in for war.  At this point they are completely united in their stance that there will not be a single penny for a border wall.  The following comes from CNS News

Sen. Dick Durbin, an Illinois Democrat, told CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday that President Trump should not expect Congress to give him any money to fund his “outlandish” border wall.

Trump has requested $1.4 billion to get the wall started in the current fiscal year, which runs through September, but Durbin on Sunday called it a political stunt and a poison pill:

“I hope the president will back off,” Durbin said.

So will either side back down by Friday?

I don’t think so, and that means that a government shutdown is coming.

Of course there is talk that Congress could pass a one week or two week extension to give negotiations more time, but that would just delay the inevitable.

And it isn’t just the border wall that is a sticking point.  Other issues such as funding for Planned Parenthood and increased spending for national defense could potentially derail any deal.  The following comes from Business Insider

Thomas Block, a Washington policy analyst at Fundstrat, described the problem in a note to clients on Monday:

“In the House, there is a group consisting of Tea Party and Freedom Caucus Republicans who believe that almost any spending bill is too large for them to support. Therefore, Speaker Ryan is likely going to need some Democratic support to get a bill passed. The problem is that no Democrats will support a bill that contains the president’s stated priorities.

“Furthermore, many Republicans want to use the spending bill to stop all funding for Planned Parenthood, a clear poison pill as far as most Democrats are concerned.”

In order for the public to have three days to examine any bill before a vote happens, a spending bill is going to have to be unveiled in the House by Wednesday at the latest in order to meet the deadline.

Is that going to happen?

I doubt it, but it is always possible.

But even if a bill gets through the House, that doesn’t mean that the Senate will be on board with it, and unless that bill contains funding for a border wall Trump may not sign it.

So what specifically would happen during a government shutdown?  The following is a good summary from Zero Hedge

  1. Details of which government functions stop are determined by the Office of Management and Budget.
  2. If it looks like a shutdown will occur, White House budget office works with federal agencies to determine which federal functions and employees are “essential” or “excepted.” The White House has latitude in how broadly it defines “excepted.”
  3. Agencies and services considered non-essential close. Federal workers will be furloughed without pay. The Federal Government employs over 4-million individuals, so this can be hundreds of thousands of workers affected. Congress may decide after the shutdown to pay them for the time off. Financial disruption is one concern.
  4. “Emergency personnel” continue to be employed, including the active duty military, federal law enforcement agents, doctors and nurses working in federal hospitals, and air traffic controllers. For the Department of Defense, at least half of the civilian workforce, and the full-time, dual-status military technicians in the US National Guard and traditional Guardsmen (those on Title 32 status) are furloughed without pay. Members of Congress continue to be paid, because their pay cannot be altered except by direct law.

Congress is only going to be back in session for two weeks before another extended 10 day vacation begins on May 5th.

That means that the clock is ticking, and at this point a deal does not seem close.

Personally, I am fully convinced that the Democrats are more than willing to allow a government shutdown to happen, because they believe that it will damage the Republicans far more than it will damage them.

So they are not going to move from their demands, and that means that either Trump is going to have to give up his dream of a border wall or there will be a government shutdown on his 100th day in office.

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After Dramatic Obamacare Failure, Trump Now Faces A Looming Government Shutdown He May Not Be Able To Prevent March 27, 2017

If you thought that the Obamacare debacle was bad, just wait until you see what happens next.  The continuing resolution that is currently funding the government expires on April 28th, and if a new funding agreement is not reached prior to that time, there will be a government shutdown like we witnessed in 2013 starting on April 29th.  Unfortunately, as I will explain below, if a government shutdown happens it may go for a lot longer than just a couple of weeks this time around.

April 28th may sound like it is quite some time away, but because the congressional calendar has so many “holes” in it, there is actually not very much time for Congress to act.

If you can believe it, there are only 12 “legislative days” between now and April 28th, and if something is not done on one of those 12 days the government will shut down on April 29th.

Needless to say, a government shutdown would greatly rattle the financial markets.  Thanks to the Obamacare disaster, the Dow has now experienced its longest losing streak in six years, and another down day for the Dow on Tuesday would make it the longest losing streak since 1978.

With the Republicans in control of the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives, you would think that a government shutdown would be unlikely.

Sadly, that is not the case.  In fact, political reporter Mike Allen says that a “top Republican” told him that a government shutdown on April 29th is “more likely than not”…

A top Republican with close ties to the White House tells me that after the GOP failure on healthcare, a government shutdown — looming when a continuing resolution runs out April 28 — is “more likely than not… Wall Street is not expecting a shutdown and the markets are unprepared.”

And Chris Krueger of Cowen Washington Research Group today will warn financial clients: “Hello April 29 government shutdown.”

That’s Day 100 of the Trump presidency, by the way.

During a government shutdown, essential government services continue to operate, but everything else ceases.  Huge numbers of government employees are temporarily furloughed, government parks are closed, and some government agencies pretty much quit functioning at all.  The last time this actually happened was in 2013

The issue confronting Trump is similar to the one that President Obama and then-House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio faced in 2013: a block of conservative Republicans who are willing to vote ‘No’ instead of bowing to pressure from the White House, Wall Street, and even powerful establishment interest groups.

But unlike then, a single party holds all three major levers of power in government.

The government shut down for more than two weeks in 2013 after Tea Party members refused to backdown and tried to use the leverage of a shutdown to defund Obamcare.

So why would conservative members of Congress want to force a government shutdown in 2017?

Well, for one thing we continue to add more than a trillion dollars a year to the national debt.  During the Obama era, the U.S. national debt rose from 10.6 trillion dollars to just under 20 trillion dollars.

In a just society, the politicians that have been stealing trillions of dollars from future generations of Americans would be put in prison, but instead we have just come to accept that selling our children and our grandchildren into debt slavery is normal.

We have got to quit going into so much debt, and so someone needs to take a stand, and it is becoming clear that it won’t be President Trump.

Just a few weeks ago, Trump made his intentions crystal clear during a conversation with New York Times Magazine contributor Robert Draper

When I spoke with Trump, I ventured that, based on available evidence, it seemed as though conservatives probably shouldn’t hold their breath for the next four years expecting entitlement reform. Trump’s reply was immediate. “I think you’re right,” he said. In fact, Trump seemed much less animated by the subject of budget cuts than the subject of spending increases. “We’re also going to prime the pump,” he said. “You know what I mean by ‘prime the pump’? In order to get this” — the economy — “going, and going big league, and having the jobs coming in and the taxes that will be cut very substantially and the regulations that’ll be going, we’re going to have to prime the pump to some extent. In other words: Spend money to make a lot more money in the future. And that’ll happen.” A clearer elucidation of Keynesian liberalism could not have been delivered by Obama.

In other words, Trump wants to take government spending to an even higher level than Obama did.

And Trump is certainly correct that this would help the economy in the short-term, but it would also be extremely destructive to the bright future that our children and our grandchildren were supposed to have.

In addition to addressing our exploding national debt, conservatives in Congress are going to want to tie defunding Planned Parenthood to any agree to continue funding the government…

  • The current continuing resolution to fund the government expires on April 28.
  • The conservative House Freedom Caucus — the group Trump blamed on Twitter this morning for killing his Obamacare replacement bill — will almost certainly make defunding the women’s health group and country’s biggest abortion provider a non-negotiable condition for it to support the government funding bill.
  • That’s a big problem. There’s no way a bill that defunds Planned Parenthood gets 60 votes in the Senate.

This is the issue that could force a government shutdown to last for an extended period of time.

Today the Republicans control the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives.  If Planned Parenthood is not going to be defunded now, it never will be.

If I was a member of the Freedom Caucus, I would make defunding Planned Parenthood my line in the sand.  These butchers systematically kill millions of American babies, they auction off the body parts to the highest bidders, and the federal government gives them approximately 500 million dollars a year to keep operating.

If President Trump and Paul Ryan choose to fight the Freedom Caucus over defunding Planned Parenthood, any agreement to fund the government will not have enough Republican votes in the House.  But any bill which defunds Planned Parenthood will get filibustered by Democrats in the Senate.

There is always the possibility that President Trump could turn his back on the conservatives in Congress and try to make a deal with the Democrats, but then he would have to get that deal passed by a Republican-controlled House and a Republican-controlled Senate.

To me, it is worth forcing a government shutdown in order to defund Planned Parenthood.

If Donald Trump decides that he wants to do a deal that includes continued funding for Planned Parenthood that is not okay.

Let me repeat – that is not okay.

If Donald Trump or any other Republican member of Congress agrees to a deal that includes continued funding for Planned Parenthood, that will mean that the blood of all the children that are murdered by Planned Parenthood from that day forward will be on their hands too.

Most people don’t realize this, but this is actually one of the most critical moments in American history.

If President Trump and the Republicans defund Planned Parenthood, that will be an exceptionally good thing for our country.

But if President Trump and the Republicans choose not to do this, there will be no more excuses left to offer, and I believe that the consequences for our nation will be far more severe than most people would dare to imagine.

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