Tag Archive: government shutdown

Why the end of the Trump Shutdown is good for Democrats

National Park closures during 2013 government shutdown

Today, Senate Democrats and Republicans agreed to end the federal government shutdown (known as the “Trump Shutdown”) and keep government running until February 8, by which time Congress hopes to vote on a new long-term spending bill. In return for their agreement, Democrats got a six-year extension of the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) that Congressional Republicans had let expire last September. Furthermore, the agreement includes a promise by Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to hold a vote on codifying the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy, which Donald Trump ended last September. The agreement can be seen as a net win for Democrats, and they should portray it as such.

NBC’s Kasie Hunt blames “both sides” for problems in Washington, gets slammed

Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison and colleagues demonstrating against GOP government shutdown in 2013.

Today, Kasie Hunt of NBC News took to Twitter to blame “both sides” for the current mess in Washington, including another potential federal government shutdown. Here’s Hunt’s tweet:

Almost immediately, Hunt got slammed on Twitter by many people who all had essentially the same reaction. Here are a few samples, including one from Messaging Matters:

Pope Francis vs. the Republicans

Pope Francis t-shirt vendors

Pope Francis t-shirt vendors

“The Catholic Church is now more progressive on both science and social issues than the GOP.” That’s the message coming from the humorous meme site lolworthy.com, accompanied by a photo of an astronaut on a spacewalk. Once again, the humorists have it right. The visit of Pope Francis to the United States is most noteworthy in the contrast between the Pope’s hopeful, humanistic message and the negative reaction from many in the Republican party.

Speaking before a joint session of Congress on Thursday, Pope Francis said some things that appeared to go against current Republican dogma:

GOP caught putting party first during government shutdown

Republicans just got caught red-handed putting the interests of the Republican party over those of the country during their GOP government shutdown. First, as the video above indicates, Republican Senator Rand Paul was caught on a hot mic telling his colleague, GOP Senator Mitch McConnell:

I just did CNN and I just go over and over again, ‘we’re willing to compromise, we’re willing to negotiate.’ I don’t think they poll tested ‘we won’t negotiate,’ I think it’s awful for them to say that over and over again. … I think if we keep saying, ‘we wanted to defund it, we fought for that, but now we’re willing to compromise on this,’ we’re gonna win.

Then today, Republican Congressman Eric Cantor passed a memo to his colleagues urging a similar strategy to that expressed by Rand Paul, i.e., to say that President Obama and Democrats in Congress are “refusing to negotiate” during the GOP shutdown, and that Republicans are willing to negotiate. Cantor further urges his House colleagues to push for piecemeal bills to fund only parts of the federal government which are popular with the American people, such as reopening our national parks and funding veterans benefits.

Alas, the Republicans’ cynical strategy is now laid bare with evidence on video and on paper: take the United States hostage by shutting down the government, ask for ransom (defunding or delaying the Affordable Care Act that is the law of the land), then criticize Democrats for rightfully refusing to negotiate with the hostage takers. Are there any regular folks left in America who think the Republicans give a damn about them?