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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Shutdown Update: Boxed in a Canyon


Robert Costa, Josh Dawsey, Philip Rucker, and Seung Min Kim at WP:
In the weeks leading up to December’s deadline to fund the government, Trump was warned repeatedly about the dangers of a shutdown but still opted to proceed, according to officials with knowledge of the conversations.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) told the president that he had no leverage and that, without a clear strategy, he would be “boxed in a canyon.” He tried to make the case to Trump that even if Pelosi and Schumer were interested in cutting a deal with him, they would be constrained from compromising because of internal Democratic Party pressures to oppose Trump’s wall, these officials said.
Then-House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) talked with Trump by phone for 45 minutes the day before the shutdown, warning that he saw no way to win as he paced in a Capitol hallway just outside a conference room where House Republicans were meeting. Then-House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) warned about the perils of a shutdown during the Christmas season.

Inside, some of the more hard-line members urged a showdown over border wall funding, arguing that Trump’s core supporters would revolt otherwise. But McCarthy asked, “Tell me what happens when we get into a shutdown? I want to know what our next move is.”
Jennifer Agiesta writes of a new CNN poll:
The public generally is more apt to blame the President, with 55% saying he is more responsible for the shutdown than are Democrats in Congress, while 32% say the blame rests mostly with the Democrats. Another 9% say both are responsible. Democrats are more unified in their blame for the President (89% blame Trump) than are the Republican rank-and-file in blaming the Democrats (65% of Republicans blame the Democrats in Congress, 23% blame Trump). Independents are more apt to blame Trump (48% to 34%), and are most likely to say both sides are responsible (14%).
RELATED: Full poll results
Sofi Sinozich writes of a new ABC poll:
Fifty-three percent in the national survey said that Trump and the GOP are mainly responsible for the shutdown, while 29 percent blamed congressional Democrats, nearly a 2-1 margin against the president and his party. Thirteen percent said both equally are at fault. (Slightly fewer, 48 percent, blamed Trump and his party during the brief partial shutdown a year ago.)
Responsibility is assigned largely along party lines. But while 85 percent of Democrats and 78 percent of liberals mainly blamed Trump and the GOP for the partial shutdown, fewer Republicans (68 percent) or conservatives (50 percent) mainly blamed the Democrats in Congress. A third of conservatives said Trump and the congressional Republicans are at fault.
See PDF for full results, charts, and tables.
On Friday, Domenic Montanbaro wrote of an NPR poll:
Three-quarters of Americans say the government shutdown, now tied for the longest in U.S. history, is "embarrassing for the country," including a majority of Republicans, a new NPR/Ipsos Poll finds.
If no deal is struck by midnight Friday, this partial shutdown will be the longest ever. From late 1995 to early 1996, the government was shut down for 21 days. Friday is the 21st day of this current shutdown. Neither side appears ready to budge, and this poll and others make Democrats feel they have the upper hand.

And they have reason to feel that way — about 7 in 10 in the NPR/Ipsos Poll also say the government shutdown is going to hurt the country, that it will hurt the economy and that Congress should pass a bill to reopen the government now while budget talks continue. Just 3 in 10 believe the government should remain closed until there is funding for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.