Despite being forced to miss a party at Mar-a-Lago in honor of his inauguration in January, President Trump sarcastically remarked that the shutdown was a “present” from Democrats. In his eyes, the shutdown made him look good, which flies in the face of public statements he made against President Obama during a government shutdown in 2013. With another government shutdown possible later this week, Trump is actually calling for it to happen if his immigration demands (including not letting “killers” into the U.S.) aren’t met.
Speaking to reporters after a meeting with law enforcement officials assembled to discuss gang-related violence, Trump segued to shutting down the government:
“I’d love to see a shut down if we can’t get this stuff taken care of. If we have to shut it down because the Democrats don’t want safety, let’s shut it down.”
The comments mark the second time Trump has suggested a shutdown in order to get funding for a border wall — an increasingly unpopular policy agenda item. The last shutdown ended when Democrats were promised by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell that a DACA deal would be negotiated, however Trump and other Republicans in Congress have repeatedly shot down attempts at bipartisan legislation.
House Republicans are currently set to try and pass another temporary funding measure, which may be dead-on-arrival in the Senate, where it is unlikely to receive any Democrat support necessary to meet the 60-vote threshold.