Who’s ready for the 2017 season of Government Shutdown Theater, coming to a legislative hall near you? It might be on the way, since there will be a new spending bill coming up shortly after the dog days of summer come to an end. Some of the members of the House Freedom Caucus are already suggesting that any spending bill which doesn’t include funding for beginning construction on President Trump’s border wall will be pretty much dead on arrival. And given the delicate balance of power in Washington right now and the fact that the Democrats will almost certainly vote no on anything suggested by Republicans, it wouldn’t take too many members of the majority to make it happen. (The Hill)
Two House conservatives on Monday warned that the government could shut down if a spending bill does not include money to fund President Trump’s wall along the Mexican border.
Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, even said he believed that Trump would veto a spending measure that did not include money for the wall.
“My conversations with the president have led me to believe that there is nothing less than a full and total commitment on his part to only sign into law a funding bill that actually allows for us to start construction of a border wall on our southern border,” Meadows told Breitbart News.
In addition to Meadows, Mo Brooks is hinting at the same thing. So what’s really going on? Is this just some red meat to toss to the base in the hopes of cheering them up in the midst of all the Russia, Russia, Russia doom and gloom? Or are they serious?
I’m not sure whether or not Trump would veto a spending bill without it, but if he’s got willing partners in Congress who are ready to go to the wall over this (pardon the pun) I have zero doubt that he’d be up at the bully pulpit cheering them on. It was, without question, the President’s largest and loudest talking point on the campaign trail and the fact that there still hasn’t been any progress on it is a continual burr under his saddle.
It’s also, at this point, the one sure-fire thing guaranteed to result in every Democrat vowing to vote against it. But this is one of most significant areas where the Left will find out they are being too clever by half and it could backfire bigly, if you’ll pardon the term. It ties into the same concept I was talking about yesterday when discussing how the Democrats are still managing to lose the war of ideas. The vast majority of the establishment media will take the side of those opposed to the wall and they will have no dearth of activists to line up for interviews fighting against it. But people actually do worry about illegal immigration and border security. (Including nearly half of Democrats.)
If this is the hill the Democrats choose to die on we might see that rarest of instances where the voters actually blame them for the shutdown rather than defaulting to blaming the GOP no matter who is in the majority. It’s an easy selling point for Trump and the GOP leadership and the ads pretty much write themselves. You’re going to shut down the entire government because you don’t want to enhance our border security? Good luck with that.
Of course, the fiscal conservatives aren’t going to go along with it unless we find a way to pay for it. (That check from the President of Mexico is still not expected in time for the next session, sadly.) But that’s easy enough too. Just take a quick look at the new sanctuary city / state policies coming from the Left coast this month. The Department of Justice hands out more than four billion in grants to the various states every year and California gets a significant chunk of that. Ditto for Homeland Security. Just cancel that entirely, plus the same funds going to Philadelphia, New York City and a few other lawless spots and you’ve got a nice, tidy sum to hand out to contractors for wall construction. No, it’s won’t pay for the entire thing, but it will be enough for a good start. And what the heck… put those solar panels on the wall too. If nothing else they might power the flood lights and recharge the batteries on the drones.
So… shutdown over the wall? What the heck. Let’s give it a shot.