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Shutdown 2018 Tag

Immigration has come to the forefront again as the government faces another possible shutdown this week. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) has already stated she will vote no against a funding bill if it does not include language for DACA members, also known as Dreamers. Another option, though, is temporary protection after President Donald Trump's March 5 deadline passes.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) needs to snap back into reality. Look, the Democrats do not have control of Congress and Donald Trump is our president and it looks like Schumer still isn't ready to accept the fact that he doesn't have power. Even after he failed with the government shutdown he thinks he has negotiating power when he decided to take wall funding off the table. Trump reminded "Cryin' Chuck Schumer" that in order to receive protections for DACA, a bill must have funding for a wall.

There have been many times when I thought the Senate was getting too big for its britches, often forgetting that they are the second chamber and not the end all, be all of everything in the government. Basic civics teaches us that everything starts in the House of Representatives. The Senate has received a lot of backlash, especially the Democrats, due to a deal to stop the government shutdown. Now the House has added to the criticism, with House Democrats claiming that the Senate has screwed them with the deal and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise stating that the lawmakers are not bound by the deal.

Glad I was in the car much of the day, while all the theatrics were going on with unshutting down the government, which never really had been shut to begin with. The overwhelming after-assessment among the punditry is that Schumer was humiliated, had little to show for either the fight or the capitulation, and that Trump won. I think that assessment is generally correct.

As this post goes live, there are lots of rumors of some sort of "deal" between Democrat and Republican "moderates" to end the government funding impasse. The Democrats, and particularly Chuck Schumer, have talked themselves into a dead end of seeming to put the interests of illegal aliens ahead of U.S. citizens. That's not a viable political strategy, but it's the strategy Democrats chose by making continued government funding contingent on a DACA deal.

UPDATE: A cloture vote to end debate in the Senate on the funding bill passed by the House failed. So we're heading to "shutdown" unless there is a last minute deal reached. As a reminder of how Obama weaponized the 2013 shutdown, see my post Flashback to when Obama weaponized 2013 government shutdown. 60 votes were needed, and it fell 10 short. 5 Democrats voted Yes: Donnelly, Heitkamp, Manchin, Jones, McCaskill. 4 Republicans voted No: Graham, Paul, Lee, Flake.

It's unclear at this point whether there will be a short-term budget deal, or a government "shutdown." Despite the drama, a shutdown is not really a shut down. Essential services continue. It's more of a scale-back, and the government has a lot of discretion as to what gets scaled back. In a press conference today OMB Director Mick Mulvaney made the point that many agencies have reserve funds that can be used, but weren't used in the 2013 shutdown.
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