Republicans were trounced in the 2018 midterm elections, but they still have one month left in their terms with a slate of legislation to pass.
A report from the New York Times gave a list of what the GOP must accomplish in the few weeks they have before the holiday break. Republicans must reauthorize the Farm Bill, pass the “largest federal criminal justice rewrite in a generation,” the Times said, and fund President Donald Trump’s border wall. Therein lies the problem.
The president spent the past several months hammering his racist war against migrants seeking refuge from their gang-run Central American countries. One campaign ad was so over the top and littered with lies that even Fox News refused to run it. While Republicans begged Trump not to run a campaign on immigration and focus on economic successes, he refused. Americans gave the GOP their pink-slips in the greatest Democratic wave since the Nixon presidency.
Most Republicans didn’t care about the president’s bizarre obsession with building a wall that would cost billions and require foreign labor and materials to construct. For the few debt hawks left in Congress, increasing the deficit just to meet a political promise likely seems absurd. Yet, as the president begins his 2020 reelection campaign with the slogan, “Promises Kept,” he’ll have to spend the next two years delivering on campaign pledges his own party has refused to support.
“We have the will to put the money at the border for better security and combine it with some sensible reforms, including things like a path to citizenship, things like making sure that we have workers on our fields and in our factories that we need,” said Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) on ABC’s “This Week.” “But what I don’t think we should do is shut down the government. And that, again, is in his hands and his party’s hands.”
If the budget comes to the president without the funding for his border wall, it’s unlikely he’ll sign it and begin another government shutdown. When speaking to reporters while on vacation at Mar-a-Lago, Trump said he didn’t want a shutdown but said he’s not sure what will happen. Americans aren’t likely to support a Republican Congress they just voted out shutting down their government for a border wall they don’t want.