(Note: Please see Trump’s updated decision at the bottom of the post.)
Multiple U.S. government shutdowns over the past few months don’t appear to have encouraged Trump to work with Congress, at least, not on a consistent basis. On Friday morning, he threatened to veto the $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill recently passed by lawmakers, which must be signed by midnight to keep the government open. The president’s move happens despite (or perhaps in spite of) House Speaker Paul Ryan expressing confidence that Trump “was on board” on all matters, including the funding amounts included for the mythical Wall and border security.
Trump now feels differently about the 2,300 page bill, and he tweeted that his considered veto might happen because his Wall “is not fully funded,” and he accused Democrats of “totally abandon[ing]” DACA recipients.
The tweet, which is sure to perplex lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, arrives a few days after a different Trump declaration, which saw his acceptance that $1.6 billion in Wall funding would be followed by more at a later date. He also groused over “hav[ing] to waste money on Dem giveaways.”
Ideally, this spending bill would end the process by which lawmakers have been passing short-term spending bills just to keep the federal government open, but if Trump drags his feet, a shutdown will probably happen anyway.
Also worth noting — on Thursday, Director of the Office of Management and Budget Mick Mulvaney told the White House press pool (in the below clip) that Trump would definitely sign the bill. Guess he was wrong?
UPDATE #1 – 2:15pm EST: After all that fuss, Trump decided to sign the spending bill anyway. He did so after briefing reporters in a long-winded lecture about how unhappy he was with the legislation, and he insisted that he’d never sign a bill like this again.
President Trump on his veto threat: “I looked very seriously at the veto. I was thinking about doing the veto. But because of the incredible gains that we’ve been able to make for the military, that overrode any of our thinking.” https://t.co/x6tOmPmBs2 pic.twitter.com/WnyVOh7BKQ
— CNN (@CNN) March 23, 2018
You can watch Trump’s rant below.