U.S. Government Shutdown – How Trump Proves Himself As A Cunning Politician

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Jan 21 2018
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Donald Trump marked the first anniversary of his inauguration with his government in shutdown mode. Essentially at midnight Friday, the U.S. federal government is partially shutdown after the Senate failed to reach a solution – the first government shutdown since 2013. If there’s any consolation prize, Trump’s predecessor Obama also had experienced such humiliation.


At that time, President Barack Obama blamed Republicans, who he claimed used the budget bill to try to leverage a rollback of the Affordable Care Act. In return, Republicans blamed Obama and the Democrats, who they said wouldn’t negotiate. What goes around comes around. This round, it’s hard for President Donald Trump to blame Democrats, at least that’s what the liberals thought.


That’s because the Republicans control both the White House and Congress. Therefore, it’s quite shameful that for the first time, a U.S. government under one-party (Republican) government is shutdown. The Democrats can now tell all and sundry that the shutdown is proof that even when the Republicans control the White House and Congress, they can’t actually run the country.

President Donald Trump Tax Plan - Capitol Hill, US Dollar, US Flag

The truth is, unfortunately, the Republican Party needs 60 out of 100 votes in the Senate. But they only got 51 votes so obviously a simple majority win still isn’t enough to pass the spending bill. To make things complicated, not all Democrats opposed the bill and not all Republicans supported their party. If passed, it would extend government funding until February 8.


The Democrats thought Trump administration could easily be intimidated into accepting their demands in exchange for not shutting down the government, betting that billionaire Donald Trump could not bear losing face. But Trump knew it was coming. And the U.S. president pre-emptively turned the table as early as May 2017 by threatening to shutdown the government himself.


In May, he tweeted that the “country needs a good ‘shutdown’” to leverage a better budget deal for Republicans. Three months later in August at a Phoenix rally, Trump told his supporters that he would rather shutdown the government if Congress refuses to fund the border wall he has promised, and his fanatic fans went wild with approval. This became his second leverage.

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals DACA -Protesters

But the good show didn’t end there. Trump cunningly generated a new leverage by ending Democrats and liberals’ beloved program – Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) – the Obama-era program that shields young undocumented immigrants from deportation. As many as 800,000 young adults brought to the U.S. illegally as children who qualify for the program are facing deportation.


Also known as the DREAMers, the 800,000 aliens are typically Democrat supporters. To prevent himself from being called a heartless monster, President Trump said the fix to the soon-to-expire temporary amnesty (to expire in March) for “Dreamers” would be a “bill of love,” but stressed that tougher border security must be part of the deal.


After all, the wall would provide security against drug traffickers and terrorists. If the Democrats are true champion of the 800,000 Dreamers (or rather illegal immigrants), as they have been trumpeting, they should be willing to build the wall. If the Democrats refuse, it proves that they don’t actually care about the Dreamers. Either way, Trump wins.

U.S. Government Shutdown - National Park Closed Signboard

After the shutdown, Trump tweets – “Democrats are far more concerned with Illegal Immigrants than they are with our great Military or Safety at our dangerous Southern Border. They could have easily made a deal but decided to play Shutdown politics instead. #WeNeedMoreRepublicansIn18 in order to power through mess!”


Indirectly, Trump was campaigning for the coming midterm election, arguing that more Republican candidates should be voted in because the Democrats obviously don’t care about the country – willing to shutdown the government in favour of illegal immigrants. Had the Democrats voted against the shutdown, the POTUS could then claim victory. Again, head Trump wins, tail Trump also wins.


In a poll last month by Quinnipiac University, 41% said they would primarily blame Republicans in Congress while 31% said the blame should mainly go to Democrats. Only 16% said they would mostly blame Trump. That is something which Trump can live with. Those 11 Republicans who opposed the legislation will be in trouble in the coming midterm 2018 election, not Donald Trump.

U.S. Government Shutdown

More importantly, the liberals – both Democrats and Republicans – have underestimated Donald Trump. The U.S. president refuses to be blackmailed into recognizing illegal immigrants while holding lawful citizens hostage. It’s quite easy to blame the Democrats for thinking DACA, which is unrelated to keeping the government open, is more important than paychecks for troops and health insurance for children.


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