As Washington D.C. is hurdling towards a government shutdown today, Democrat and GOP leaders are already blaming each other for what’s about to happen.
The Associated Press reported that as a shutdown looms, a partisan stare-down is taking place over demands by Democrats for a solution on politically fraught legislation to protect about 700,000 younger immigrants from being deported. With just hours remaining before the midnight deadline, there are few signs that an agreement is about to be reached.
Democrats in the Senate have already said that they will filibuster a four-week, government-wide funding bill that cleared the House Thursday evening. This move could expose them to charges that they are responsible for a shutdown, but they point the finger at Republicans instead.
“They’re in charge,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said Friday. “They’re not talking to us. They’re totally paralyzed and inept. There’s no one to negotiate with.”
Meanwhile, Republicans are arguing that it’s the Democrats who are holding the government hostage over demands to protect “dreamer” immigrants brought to the country as children and now here illegally. Trump’s White House has been trying to paint the impending action as the “Schumer shutdown,” but sources say the president has been working the phones trying to avert one.
The White House announced this morning that as the shutdown nears, Trump would not leave for a planned weekend trip to Florida. He had been planning to leave Friday afternoon to celebrate the one-year anniversary of his inauguration at his Palm Beach estate.
“Government Funding Bill past last night in the House of Representatives. Now Democrats are needed if it is to pass in the Senate — but they want illegal immigration and weak borders. Shutdown coming? We need more Republican victories in 2018!” Trump wrote on Twitter today.
Government Funding Bill past last night in the House of Representatives. Now Democrats are needed if it is to pass in the Senate – but they want illegal immigration and weak borders. Shutdown coming? We need more Republican victories in 2018!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 19, 2018
Budget Director Mick Mulvaney pointed out that Trump has given Congress until March 5 to save the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program protecting young immigrants, so “there is absolutely no reason to tie those things together right now.”
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