Trump’s defense of the Wall

I watched Trump’s short defense of his Big Wall and of the government shutdown he’s used as a tantrum to promote it, as well as Pelosi and Schumer’s Democratic response.  My feeling about the situation hasn’t changed: we have an impasse here, with neither side seriously interested in the bipartisan cooperation necessary to deal with immigration.

Trump needs his wall because it was his main campaign promise, and he won’t give it up unless the Democrats propose some serious legislation to stem illegal immigration while dealing with immigrants (legal or illegal) humanely. The Democrats don’t have a serious proposal on the table. Although you may disagree, if you listen to the Democrats you might easily think that they favor open borders. And they see the Wall as a symbol of the Trump they hate, which is a reason why they don’t have serious counteroffers. (Your opinion may differ.) But that won’t fly with the American public.

So we’re at an impasse. I don’t think a government shutdown is an answer, as it punishes thousands of Americans who are held hostage to the Wall. And “state of emergency” is certainly no answer; it’s of of dubious legality anyway.

Trump was as oleaginous as ever, couching his motivations in terms of empathy, of which he has none. CNN is fact-checking the President’s claims, many of which sounded dubious, at this site.

Pelosi and Schumer looked and talked like marionettes, offering only vague promises to “keep talking about immigration.”

Hemant emitted a snarky tweet, but of course what matters is the issue, not a deer-in-the-headlights appearance.

Weigh in below if you saw the give-and-take between Republicans and Democrats.

175 Comments

  1. Martin X
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

    Net immigration from Mexico is negative, so it’s not clear to me that we have an immigration problem.

  2. Gary Allan
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

    Inflows of people from Mexico and Central America are way down, to levels from the early 90’s now, so whatever problem there was is significantly reduced. The Dems have had proposals to deal with immigration and with “Dreamers” and the undocumented. This is really all on Trump.

    • Rita
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

      +1

    • ladyatheist
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

      I don’t understand how they can say that too many jobs have gone to Mexico and still imagine that too many Mexicans are coming to the U.S.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

      It’s even less than the 90s. It’s now down to early 70s levels.

      I agree with Jerry’s characterization of the issue though.

      Trump created this issue as there was a bipartisan Bill on the table that he vetoed, and it had heaps in it for border security (US$1.6 billion iirc). However, now that they have the House, the Democrats are being petty with the way they are handling this. They should be acting like the adults in the room to present a contrast to Trump, but they’re not doing anything useful.

      I’m appalled by the shutdown. 800,000 people, 420,000 of whom, including border security workers, TSA, Coast Guard, and Trump’s own Secret Service detail, have to work without pay. It’s effing disgusting.

      • Posted January 9, 2019 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

        I don’t see how you can claim the Dems are being petty without stating what they are doing that is so petty and what they should do different. Otherwise it is just another false equivalence. The only thing that makes Dems appear responsible for the shutdown is Trump’s claim that they are. I think we can fairly dismiss that claim. Good government is lawmakers doing the hard work of solving problems, negotiating solutions, and passing laws. Shutdowns should not be part of it and that is exactly the position Dems are taking: re-open the government and then get to work on border and immigration policy.

        • Heather Hastie
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

          I do not think there is false equivalence in what I wrote. I thought I made it clear I think Trump is far worse, though that may be because of what I’ve also just written in an ongoing discussion on my own site with Randall Schenck, so people here won’t know the extent of my feelings on this topic.

          Let me make it clear. This shutdown is all on Trump and he is the one who is failing to compromise. His veto is what caused the problem. My comment about the Dems relates to their rebuttal. It could have been put to much better effect and helped them gain support. Instead, they appeared intransigent and said nothing new, which was needed because there are a lot of people who don’t really know what’s going on.

          • Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

            Ok, that makes sense. I didn’t particularly like Pelosi and Schumer’s speech either but only in terms of delivery. The position they are taking is the right one.

            • rickflick
              Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

              It is unfortunate that neither Schumer nor Pelosi are very charismatic. Policy is ultimately what counts, but a well received messenger can make persuasion a lot easier.

              • Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

                Charisma is in the genes but they could have done so much better with just a good speechwriter and video producer.

              • rickflick
                Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

                Agreed. Moan…

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

      Trump thinks being a good negotiator is “winner take all”. Everything to him is a zero sum game & he must be winning. So, to him he’s a great negotiator when he’s really a dangerous menace.

      • Diane G
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

        Exactly. I’m sure Putin feels the same way.

    • rickflick
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

      Agreed.

  3. Martin X
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

    BTW, if you really wanted to stop illegal immigration, you’d focus on employers who hire these people. This is rarely done, because neither the Rs or Ds have the stomach for it.

    • ladyatheist
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

      But then who would launder the sheets or mow the lawn at Mara Lago?

    • Diane G
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 11:55 pm | Permalink

      Precisely!

    • Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:48 am | Permalink

      Actually, if you really want to stop illegal immigration, you’d do what you can to make the countries they come from nicer places to live. That would mean investing money in them and allowing free trade etc. Of course these things are politically difficult, especially with the Trumpets*.

      *I originally wrote “Trumpites” but autocorrect said “Trumpets” and I think that works just as well for “a follower of Trump”.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:55 am | Permalink

        Would’ve helped as well if the US hadn’t spent decades propping up far rightwing authoritarian caudillos in South and Central America (mainly to ensure a cheap labor force for US corporations like the United Fruit Company).

        Or if we’d curb our appetite for hoovering up the narcotics that flow through the area to the US (or, maybe, by legalizing the stuff to eliminate the lucrative black markets).

        • Rita Prangle
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:11 am | Permalink

          Don’t forget restricting the shipment of arms from the US to Mexico and other countries in central and South America as well.

      • Posted January 9, 2019 at 11:35 am | Permalink

        I totally agree. BTW, I’ve seen “Trumpers” most often and that’s what I sometimes use.

  4. notsecurelyanchored
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

    I feel like most of the people talking about the border haven’t seen it. I live in Texas.
    https://www.usatoday.com/border-wall/us-mexico-interactive-border-map/?fbclid=IwAR2mViGNwEzHFewC7cnxXj-EzOSmWfH9BXytU9dJzfjOOo4VmZ6EYrjH0UY&lng=-105.5271996&lat=30.978349&modal=true

    • ladyatheist
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

      It’s mind-boggling that someone who supposedly has a real estate background would essentially cede the Rio Grande to Mexico.

      • Posted January 8, 2019 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

        +1. I used to live in El Paso. It never occurred to me that. All the fences prevented Americans from getting near the river.

    • Diane G
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:11 am | Permalink

      Great vid, thanks. The one following it is interesting, too.

      I’ve seen a bit of the border in the lower Rio Grande Valley, and a bit in AZ south of Tucson–Nogales area, but not in Nogales per se. Been stopped at Border Patrol checkpoints which we sailed through–white privilege, I guess… Some of the border outside of cities is beautiful; all of it inspires deep reflection. We only have two contiguous neighbors with whom we’ve co-existed pretty peaceably in recent history…kind of thought that set our continent apart in a way…It’s depressing as hell to see what Trump & his base want to turn our southern border into…

      (And to have to carry a passport to visit Canada, for chrissakes! Well, mostly to get back into the US. Of course that situation came about for different concerns…)

  5. notsecurelyanchored
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:24 pm | Permalink

    I agree with Martin X above, and as a Texas resident I can tell that most politicians and people talking about the wall have never seen the border.

    https://www.usatoday.com/border-wall/us-mexico-interactive-border-map/?fbclid=IwAR2mViGNwEzHFewC7cnxXj-EzOSmWfH9BXytU9dJzfjOOo4VmZ6EYrjH0UY&lng=-105.5271996&lat=30.978349&modal=true

  6. DW
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    This is so stupid all around. Trump has made the wall a red line, and Trump is a deal-maker. If the Dems had any brains they’d cut a deal with him. They can get virtually anything out of Trump in exchange for a wall. Hell, he’d sign a Medicare-for-all bill if it also included the wall. (Doubly so if you named it Trumpcare to stroke his ego)

    • Historian
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

      “Trump is a deal-maker.”

      No, not really. Actually, his claim to be a great deal maker is as much a lie as just about everything he says. As Timothy O’Brien notes:

      “In Trump’s professional life, his inept dealmaking often came home to roost in unmanageable debts and serial bankruptcies. In his more recent political and presidential life it has revealed itself through bungled, hapless efforts to overturn the Affordable Care Act; forge a nuclear agreement with North Korea; wage trade wars with China, Mexico and Canada; retain control of the House of Representatives; turn military and diplomatic strategy on its head; lay siege to sensible immigration policy; and, now, force a government shutdown to secure funding for a prized project — a wall along the U.S.’s southern border.”

      O’Brien goes on:

      “Striking lasting deals requires intimacy with the finer points of what every party wants out of a negotiation, realistic goals, maturity, patience, flexibility — and enough leverage so the other side can’t simply stall or walk away from the table. Trump hasn’t met any of those prerequisites in his repeated efforts to fulfill his campaign promise to build a wall, a promise that played to the most xenophobic and bigoted portion of his base while not addressing any of the real shortcomings or necessary enhancements of federal immigration policy.”

      I will give this to Trump: he is a great grifter that has managed to dupe the incredulous. Unfortunately for him, he appears to have lost support from those who matriculated at Trump University.

      https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-01-07/trump-s-shutdown-proves-he-was-never-a-great-dealmaker

      • Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:32 am | Permalink

        Did you mean to type ‘credulous’ instead of ‘incredulous’?

        I agree wholeheartedly with your analyses on this site.

        • Historian
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:02 am | Permalink

          Yes, I meant credulous. Thanks for pointing out my goof.

    • Rita
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

      Well, that sounds good. BUT, it is Trump’s habit to renege on deals. So, not such a good idea after all.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:45 pm | Permalink

      Trump, “a deal maker”? That’s his self-mythologizing. He bullies and bluffs, but going back to his days as a NY real estate developer, can you name a single instance where he’s actually succeeded at serious negotiations? He’s given no hint of having any negotiating skills since becoming US president.

    • W.T. Effingham
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:56 pm | Permalink

      “Trump is a deal maker.” In fact, he is THE deal maker. Don’t take my word for it. Just ask Vladimir Putin, Mohammed bin Salman,Jared Kushner, Melania and Barron Trump. The Very Stable Genius Himself has carefully researched and determined the environmental impacts of constructing his legacy of immortality from sea to shining gulf. No wildlife will be impacted in any manner of importance by his metrics, so let’s get crackin’!👷

      • Katey
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

        If all the other reasons why a wall is stupid and wasteful and horrid didn’t exist, I would still vehemently oppose it based solely on how it impacts the free and necessary migration and travel of wildlife.

    • Diane G
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:17 am | Permalink

      But we definitely don’t want a wall! Among the many reasons, it’d play hell with much of the native wildlife in that region.

  7. Diana MacPherson
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

    Didn’t the Democrats offer $1.3 billion for enhanced surveillance and fortified fencing?

  8. Ken Kukec
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

    Presidents traditionally use prime-time addresses from the White House to speak to the American people seriously about the nation’s most pressing issues. Donald Trump said nothing new tonight, nothing he hasn’t said over and over again before, and made no case that there was a national emergency at the nation’s southern border. Given that, Pelosi and Shumer had nothing new to say in response.

    There is no crises at the southern border; illegal entries across that border have been dropping for a decade now, and reached a 46-year low last year. Immigrants crossing that border commit crimes of at lower rates than do native-born Americans. None of issues Trump uses to monger fear on this issue — crime, terrorism, disease, etc. — would be alleviated by erecting a wall.

    Trump could have had an immigration and border-security deal a year ago — indeed, he preliminarily agreed to a bipartisan deal on those topics, struck between senators Dick Durbin and Lindsey Graham — just as he preliminarily agreed just last month to a continuing resolution to keep the government functioning through February. In both instances he reneged on those promises solely because the most extreme immigration hardliners in his base grew restive, insisting he make good on the preeminent promise of his presidential campaign: to “build a wall.”

    The current governmental shutdown serves no purpose and is a source of hardship for many. What the nation needs is comprehensive immigration reform — serious public policy to be worked out among serious people. As he continually demonstrates, Donald Trump is not such a serious person.

    • Historian
      Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:14 pm | Permalink

      You make a most important point: an immigration deal could have been struck that would have avoided a shutdown, precipitated by Trump’s fear of his base turning on him. Now he has cornered himself in a box he cannot get out of. And, as many have noted, there is no reason that most government agencies cannot be funded since they have nothing to do with immigration.

      Recently, a wag has quipped: Trump is afraid of only two things — Rush Limbaugh and Robert Mueller.

      • Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

        Congress can get together, pass a budget bill and override Trump’s veto.
        They should get busy and go their job.

        • Mark R.
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

          By “they” you mean Republicans, right?

          • Posted January 9, 2019 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

            No, I mean democrats and republicans.

            • Mark R.
              Posted January 10, 2019 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

              I think you’re confused.

              • Posted January 10, 2019 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

                Neither party has the sixty votes it will take to bring a vote to the floor or the sixty seven votes it takes to over ride a veto. Some democrats and republicans will has enough to work together. That is the way our system works today or it does not work at all.
                Call or email your senators and tell them to do their job and fund the government.

              • GBJames
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

                There’s already enough if McDonnell will allow a vote. It already passed the Senate unanimously, just a few weeks ago. Republicans are so afraid of Rush, Ann, and Sean that they are allowing Mitch to sit on his hands. They aren’t standing on any principle, they’re just following the Orange Menace’s base-pandering over the cliff. It is a party committing suicide.

      • Lee
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:03 am | Permalink

        I would add: Trump is also afraid of Putin (who has all the receipts for their election help), his base, being seen as a loser, and a lifetime of criminal activity catching up with him. He is a very small, very empty man, and the walls are closing in on him.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:29 am | Permalink

        “Trump is afraid of only two things — Rush Limbaugh and Robert Mueller.”

        Wow, talk about being stuck between Charybdis and Scylla. 🙂

    • Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:33 pm | Permalink

      The two hundred mile fence and additional border patrol asked for would be of considerable help in control of illegal immigration and drug traffic.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 8, 2019 at 11:25 pm | Permalink

        Great. That’s why the Democrats offered him $1.6 billion for border security in the deal he originally agreed to last month to keep the government open. Congress gave him $1.6 billion for border security last year and, so far, he’s spent only a fraction of it.

    • Caldwell
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:25 am | Permalink

      There is no crises at the southern border; illegal entries across that border have been dropping for a decade now, and reached a 46-year low last year.

      Not really.

      U.S. Border Patrol Southwest Border Apprehensions FY

      2014: 569K
      2015: 444K
      2016: 553K
      2017: 415K
      2018: 521K

    • Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

      “. . .illegal entries across that border have been dropping for a decade now. . . .”

      Actually, Ken, it’s apprehension of people entering illegally that has been dropping. The fact that we catch fewer criminals doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s less crime. It might just indicate that our apprehension skills are slipping. 😊

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

        Right, you are, Gary, though it seems to be the most accurate measure available.

  9. Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

    “The Democrats don’t have a serious proposal on the table.“

    There is a serious short-term spending proposal on the table, the same as that passed earlier by a Republican Senate and House before Trump threw his tantrum. And how can the Democrats propose serious immigration legislation when they have just taken control and Trump is figuratively holding a gun to their head?

    • Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

      I also take issue with this statement. It would be easy enough to revive some of the previous proposals that had bipartisan support but there is no real chance of passing them in the current environment.

      I also am sure that it would be easier to negotiate some kind of deal if our deal maker in chief wouldn’t lie about it hand over fist. I actually feel that Trump gave a pretty good address tonight, short and to the point. So style-wise a success but content-wise, his facts are full of BS.

  10. Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    The five plus million would build a little over two hundred miles of fence along the border mostly in Texas where illegal immigration and drug traffic is high. It would add 375 additional border agents, and some canines.

    I do not see this ad an unreasobabke request. But the actual details of what the funds will be used for has not sufficiently discussed by either side.

    Democrats make it sound as if the vote is for a wall over the entire border. It is not.

    We already have six hundred miles of fence, sponsored and agreed to by both parties. I fon’t see the big deal here.

    The congress can pass a budget and override Trumpt’s veto if there us one.

    Congress will respond to pressure from the voters. Please contact your representative in congress and urge action and passage of a budget and veto override if needed.

    I would support a constitutional amendment yovreduce the number of votes needed to override a veto.

    • David Peters
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 7:10 am | Permalink

      Billion. 5 plus billion, not million.

      I suggest reversing some of the recent tax cuts for the ultra wealthy if he’s serious about it. Otherwise, it’s just more debt.

      • Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:44 am | Permalink

        Sorry for the typo. Another one that I missed. Five billion plus which is about four billion more that offered.

        I agree with you about the taxes. The tax cut of the top brackets was one of the worst things done by congress and an administration since W invaded Iraq. It substantially increases the deficit and will lead to an increase in the power of the plutocrats and plunge us into a recession or both. That was s big wrong decision for our country.

        • Heather Hastie
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

          Most of the drugs actually come through border control entry posts (or whatever they’re called). Extra wall would make no difference there. There are very few areas that aren’t already walled or fenced that need them, though there are some, and also some that need an upgrade to what’s there according to border control officials. The Dems should give money for that. They’re offering money for more agents, and that’s good, but I understand there’re currently a huge number of unfilled positions that they’re having difficulty recruiting for. I’ve heard the numbers 600 and 2,000 and I’m not sure which is correct though the source I would normally judge the most reliable (CNN) says 2,000. Currently, border control agents are working without pay, which isn’t good for recruitment purposes, especially when Trump says the shutdown may last years. Other money in the Bill Trump vetoed was for various types of electronic monitoring, which would be most useful in many areas.

          The amount of money Trump wants simply isn’t needed, and nor is the wall he’s demanding. The problem is that his 2020 campaign team are worried about running for reelection without a wall. (They admit this freely.) Trump’s base is not well informed about the needs on the southern border and think an actual wall is needed because Trump said so. They think he will find it difficult to get elected without the wall because it was such a big part of his 2016 campaign. That’s his own fault because he’s never grown his base. He’s continued to appeal to only a small slice of the population and that’s coming back to bite him in the bum.

          • rickflick
            Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

            ” I understand there’s currently a huge number of unfilled positions that they’re having difficulty recruiting for.”

            I can’t help making the suggestion that they use some of the hoards trampling over the wall. 😎

          • Posted January 10, 2019 at 9:19 am | Permalink

            Congress should get together, democrats and republicans, pass a budget and over rude his veto. This shutdown may be costing up to a billion a week. Plus the damage to millions of people.
            Write or call your congressman and put pressure on them to act.

            Either party could solve this shutdown. Failure to do so falls on both parties.

            • GBJames
              Posted January 10, 2019 at 9:28 am | Permalink

              Mitch McConnell is the key to saving this. If you have a Republican Senator, call him/her.

            • Diane G
              Posted January 10, 2019 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

              No one can over rude Trump.

              • Posted January 10, 2019 at 6:12 pm | Permalink

                It takes sixty seven boats to over rude Trump in the Senate chamber.

              • Diane G
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

                LOL! Good one, OG!

  11. David Jorling
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

    The Dems once seriously offered 35 billion for the wall in exchange for taking care of the Daca immigrants. But apparently Steve Miller told Trump it would be a mistake.

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-12-13/how-trump-let-his-goal-of-building-a-border-wall-slip-away

    The picture of Schumer and Pelosi is priceless. They both really need to retire.

    • Diane G
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:22 am | Permalink

      I don’t see what the hell is wrong with that pic, and the ageism here is getting pretty annoying. Not mention the lookism.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:22 am | Permalink

        True. But its being entitled “American Gothic” made me laugh in spite of myself. 🙂

        • darrelle
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:46 am | Permalink

          Did you happen to see Ocasio-Cortez on the Rachel Maddow show last night? Some feisty young blood there.

          • Blue
            Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:04 am | Permalink

            No, Mr darrelle, I did not see her upon
            Ms Rachel’s show; but she was feisty
            upon the most recent 60 Minutes – airing.
            Of thus:
            http://www.cbs.com/shows/60_minutes/video/SRMCs3QSphj4GK_HrJ6AgSLcWtH5BTEg/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-president-el-sisi-an-unlikely-inventor

            And, o’course, very many older and male ones
            are labeling her mouthy and naïve and
            stupid. She will have that labeling done
            unto her for a long and long and long time
            ahead of her.

            Blue

            • mikeyc
              Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:55 am | Permalink

              Sadly, Blue, that’s true. She is now saddled with the reputation of someone who doesn’t have a clue. She is an engaging and interesting person who, if given time, could develop into a serious member of congress. But now she’s got a big hurdle (of her own making) to overcome.

              • Posted January 9, 2019 at 11:55 am | Permalink

                While I’m sure AOC has made some missteps, it is way too soon to write her off. As evidence, today’s LA Times Business section had an opinion by Michael Hiltzik about how her proposed 70% marginal tax rate for the ultra-rich is not the radical proposal the GOP are portraying and that she mostly has done her homework on this. She has to be careful at this stage in her career. Things are moving fast for her and she’s probably having trouble keeping up. How she handles it will decide whether she stays a force in politics or goes the Palin path to political oblivion.

      • Posted January 9, 2019 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

        I fear the Dems will lose again if they don’t curb the habit of eating their own.

        • Diane G
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:34 pm | Permalink

          Exactly. (And sorry for the missing “to” in my comment.)

  12. Jon Gallant
    Posted January 8, 2019 at 11:20 pm | Permalink

    I agree that the tone of Mr. Trump’s short address was an improvement on his usual
    bluster. However the content—inviting a
    “compromise” entirely on his own terms—was
    ludicrous. He has childishly boxed himself into a position even weaker than that of the Tea Party zealots who shut down the federal government in 2013 in their vain attempt to abolish the Affordable Care Act. This new charade will not do the Republicans any good.

    In fact, Mr. Trump has already done wonders for the Democratic Party, both invigorating
    it and helping it to capture the House of Representatives. In this light, I can almost forgive Dr. Jill Stein, the pop-Left, and Vladimir Vladimirovich for helping to get Mr. Trump elected in 2016. Perhaps the latter entities weren’t thinking long-term.

  13. Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:15 am | Permalink

    Our southern border issues are just a small part of the global economic disparity. That can’t be solved unilaterally.

  14. Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:21 am | Permalink

    The Dems can’t fold on this or Trump will be threatening shutdown every time he wants something he can’t have. The border “crisis” is fake. All Dems are asking for is for government to operate rationally. I am sure Schumer, Pelosi, and others have tried to reason with Trump in meeting after meeting, explaining that they are willing to work on border security if it is fact-based and realistic. We all know that this is not how Trump operates. He wants what he wants and he wants it now. A parent shouldn’t give in to a child when they throw a tantrum and the Dems shouldn’t give in to Trump. This kind of thing is what Trump thinks of as good deal-making. It’s not.

    • James
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:46 am | Permalink

      “The Dems can’t fold on this or Trump will be threatening shutdown every time he wants something he can’t have.”

      I think this is an important issue that’s too-little addressed in this debate. The wall isn’t the issue; $5 billion isn’t really that much money to the government. The bigger issue here is: How much power does the president have? Right now we have fairly strong presidents. As long as the president is on their side most people see nothing wrong with it, but that’s ignoring the bigger picture. The other side ALWAYS gains power eventually, and if you spend 8 years (or 16, or however long) building up the power of the presidency to give your guy enough power to enact legislation you like, you’ve also spent that time giving your opponents that same power.

      Our system is supposed to be based on checks and balances. Congress and the presidency were designed to keep each other in check. Part of that is ensuring that neither group strong-arms the other. It’s unlikely that Congress (consisting of several hundred career politicians) will become more powerful than the president, but it was known in the 1700s that a strong presidency was very likely to lead to the end of the republic.

      I have no strong opinions about the boarder wall (it’s not an area I’ve studied sufficiently to have a strong opinion on), but I hope the Democrats win if only to show that Congress isn’t going to be bullied by the president. If they cave, not only will Trump continue to act this way, but future presidents will use this tactic, to the detriment of everyone.

      In short, we need Congress to put a stop to this tactic once and for all.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

        “I have no strong opinions about the boarder [sic] wall (it’s not an area I’ve studied sufficiently to have a strong opinion on) …”

        It’s not an area Donald Trump has studied sufficiently to have a strong opinion on either. Indeed, Trump never seriously studied any matters of public policy before taking office (and precious little since).

        “The Wall” wasn’t the product of a think-tank proposal or a government “white paper” study; it was a line one of Trump’s campaign hangers-on stuck into his speech one night, a mnemonic to help him remember to talk a hard line on immigration. It got a big response from the crowd that night, and so it (and, later, the addition that “and Mexico will pay for it!”) became staples of his stump speech. No more thought went into the proposal than that.

        Trump doesn’t really care about The Wall (or border security, or immigration or crime or any other public policy issues). He cares only for personal wealth and self-aggrandizement. But as part of the latter, he cares deeply about losing the support of his rabid, nativist base. They believed him when he said he was going to build a wall on the Mexican border, and they’ve given signs they might abandon him if he abandons it.

        That’s the box Trump finds himself in on this issue now.

  15. Robert Van Orden
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:49 am | Permalink

    I agree that the Dems haven’t articulated a plan for border security. Partially, because it doesn’t play well to their base but also because in fact illegal immigration has been reduced over the last seventeen and a half years. The policies and practices in place have worked, at least to a degree. And there is money for increased security in the continuing resolution!

    From what I’ve read, and what I believe, the wall is an outdated and ineffective form of border security. The vulnerable points of entry are the airports and the sea ports and other places of entry where terrorists/smugglers/etc. try to come in ‘under the radar’. The wall is just a Trump vanity project and a likely grift.

    As far as the shut down impasse , there is no reason for the Dems to give an inch. Polling data shows most people pin the shutdown on Trump (correctly, in my opinion). We’ve all seen the video where Trump says he’ll take the mantle. Many (Most?) people remember there was a deal in place to keep the government open that Trump refused to sign.

    It’s political hardball, which is unfortunate because innocent people will be hurt. But giving in to the bully only makes matters worse down the line. Trump can’t be allowed to have this tactic work.

  16. Posted January 9, 2019 at 1:19 am | Permalink

    Seems to me this is not just a question of dems vs reps, but of executive vs legislative. Trump would like to be dictator and is capable of trying to stage a coup d’etat. Except I don’t think the army likes him either.

    Whatever happened to checks and balances? I’m afraid our Constitution is being stretched to its limits and some seams are getting dangerously close to splitting.

  17. Posted January 9, 2019 at 1:21 am | Permalink

    Also, all these guys were elected to run the government. Shutdowns should not be an option.

  18. mikeb
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 3:09 am | Permalink

    We know where this ends.

    What happens when you insert a slice of bread and depressed the lever?

    Toast.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:19 am | Permalink

      The Donald has toaster’s lever duct-taped in the down position.

      But, hey, no doubt it’s a gold-plated toaster.

  19. infiniteimprobabilit
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 4:02 am | Permalink

    From what I saw, tRump’s address was such arrant sensation-mongering BS it sank itself. The Dems hardly need to respond to it.

    Why should anyone try to make a deal with a narcissistic moron whose demands are ridiculous? Most megalomaniacs have enough wit to realise their claims need to be credible. tRump evidently doesn’t care whether anyone seriously believes him or not.

    It’s supposed to be counterproductive to call tRump supporters morons, but seriously – who with the slightest traces of intelligence could believe a word he says?

    cr

    • Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:49 am | Permalink

      Trump. Please proof read your post and correct your typos. 😖

      • Diane G
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

        Sarcasm, right?

        • Posted January 9, 2019 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

          Payback. He did the same thing to me last week when I misspelled someone’s last name.

          • Diane G
            Posted January 9, 2019 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

            Quite a few of your posts have been far worse. In an informal discussion like this, I think we all forgive (and are guilty ourselves of) the occasional typo. But when there are several per post it feels disrespectful of the readers.

          • Diane G
            Posted January 9, 2019 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

            Oh, and, BTW, his spelling was intentional–not a typo. (Surely you knew that?)

            • Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

              Yes, I knew that it was intentional. That makes it worse. My misspelling he called out was a typo. His was not.

              I make typos to a greater extent than anyone else on here. I am aware of that. Not as many since I turned off predictive text and auto correct. But still too many.

              But I have never intentionally misspelled or mistyped anyone’s name as an intentionsl display of disrespect.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

                I usually type on a phone or an iPad so my typos are many. Add to that poor eyesight & autocorrect and you’re really doomed.

              • Michael Fisher
                Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

                OG:

                “…I have never intentionally misspelled or mistyped anyone’s name as an intentionsl [sic] display of disrespect”

                I’m intrigued – you think we should show the Orange Pumpkinhead respect by using his formal given name & title? Because he’s the U.S. Prez?

                Is that rule for Americans only or do I, a Brit, have to play along too?

              • infiniteimprobabilit
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 6:39 am | Permalink

                Hi Diana and Michael – yes my mis-capitalisation (not quite misspelling) of tRump was an intentional sign of disrespect. I normally deprecate making fun of peoples’ names but I’ll make an exception for the Orange Idiot.

                I really can’t remember which misspelling of OG’s I drew attention to. We all know typos are an occupational hazard and I’m certainly not going to get my tits in a tangle if someone points out mine.

                cr

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 8:45 am | Permalink

                I think you mean “Diane”. My contributions were all smart assed ones.

              • Diane G
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

                I really don’t mind when my nanny-ish comments are attributed to Diana…

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

                As long as you get some of my typos.

              • Diane G
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

                You certainly have enough to spare…

              • GBJames
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 7:04 am | Permalink

                What he said. (infiniteimprob)

  20. Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:02 am | Permalink

    I was surprised that the Dems seem spiteful and political right now, almost as bad as Trump’s attitude. They should never have taken off the table the partial wall money that they had previously offered. Doing so was a petty and stupid move. I think the Dems are going to blow this, either now or in the next election. Incredible. Both parties are just playing politics.

    • alexander
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:12 am | Permalink

      “Both parties are just playing politics.”

      Of course. A two-party system can lead to absurd situations, and with Trump it did. Just look at the circus going on in the UK re Brexit. You need 4-5 political parties to achieve democracy.

      • Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:30 am | Permalink

        But then you get crazy minority parties holding the whole system hostage as tiebreakers.

        There were times when the US was less partisan than now. I think the problem is the voters, who are now team cheerleaders instead of independent thinkers. Perhaps the party system itself is flawed but it is hard to think of a better alternative.

        • alexander
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:30 am | Permalink

          Not with proportional representation.

        • Posted January 9, 2019 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

          You are right about the crazy minority parties, we have this in my country and other European countries.

  21. ladyatheist
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    I blame McConnell. A continuing resolution was passed in the Senate by a veto-proof majority, but he learned that the doofus wouldn’t sign it so he didn’t send it to the WH. Being vetoed would have been a good reality check for the cheetoh.

    • Harrison
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:37 am | Permalink

      You’re understating it. It passed 100-0. Not a soul voted against it. Now Turtle Man won’t even let it come back up for a vote.

  22. GBJames
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    I think you’ve got this one wrong, PCC[E]. There is no “compromise” that can be made by the Democrats here. They’ve already passed the legislation that the Republican Senate previously passed. The Orange Menace has shut down government as an act of extortion because radio talk show hosts told him he had to do so. He has no support for his wall (which Mexico should be paying for anyway) from anyone except the Republican base.

    Mitch McConnell is the problem here, as ladyatheist pointed out just above. Dems cannot cave on this, and should not.

    • darrelle
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      I agree. Trump is like a terrorist saying “meet my demands or I’ll have to hurt all these innocent people and it will be your fault.” His demand is the wall and the innocent people he is hurting are US citizens being impacted by the government shutdown. And his claims are nearly 100% lies.

      There is no immigration crisis but what Trump and his administration have created themselves. They have systematically removed or curtailed programs that enable legal immigration thus creating more illegal immigrants out of people who in the past would have been / were legal while at the same time engaging in radical scaremongering, lies, about an immigration crisis that doesn’t actually exist.

      I don’t understand the criticisms of the Democrats here. I thought Pelosi’s and Schumer’s response last night was refreshingly straight talk. They called it exactly like it is. And it just isn’t accurate that the Democrats haven’t offered immigration reform policies of their own or been willing to negotiate on them. They have. Many times. Most recently Trump indicated he was willing to agree on a bipartisan bill, then reneged. It’s as if the Trump / Republican lies have actually persuaded many liberal leaning folk into believing that at least part of the lies are true. That the Democrats are a big part of the problem here. This is the perniciousness of The Big Lie propaganda tactics. Even when people don’t believe the details they are swayed in a more general sense into believing that the targets are somehow significantly to blame.

      • GBJames
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:46 am | Permalink

        Yes. I find it depressing when fellow liberals fall for the “Democrats don’t care about border security” slur.

        • ladyatheist
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:24 am | Permalink

          It proves the effectiveness of the Goebbels-style propaganda techniques being used by the Putin Puppet Team.

        • Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:51 am | Permalink

          You are right. The facts that they have always approved fences in the past proved they care. Or cared in the past. Why have they changed.

          • GBJames
            Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:14 am | Permalink

            They haven’t.

          • Posted January 9, 2019 at 11:48 am | Permalink

            Why have they changed? Because Trump is now holding the government hostage rather than negotiating a solution to border security and immigration. Dems know that if they cave, Trump would use this tactic again and again to get what he wants. Although he campaigned on looking out for the little guy, he has shown that his true feelings are the opposite. The tax cuts mostly went to the corporations and the rich while his trade wars and this shutdown hurt the little guy.

            • Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

              I agree with you about the tax cuts. That is really going to cause ya problems in a few years. Increased power of plutocrats and a recession will be the result. Traduced standard of living for all, including the rich. TCes that are too low in the upper brackets ultimately backfire on everyone.

              Don’t agree with you one the
              trade wars and confronting China. The trade deficit is going to hurt the country as badly as the tax cuts. There are ways to reduce the deficit in addition to tariffs and those should be pursued but tariffs on certain industries are necessary and something we have always had.

              Argument that democrats can’t compromise now becausd iof future demands us just a bogus argument. Trump could make the same argument about giving in to the republicans.

              Cingress should come up with a budget , pass it and over ride the veto if there is one. Congress has that power and they could use it. That will may be how this standiff ends.

            • Posted January 9, 2019 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

              I agree with you about the tax cuts. That is really going to cause ya problems in a few years. Increased power of plutocrats and a recession will be the result. Traduced standard of living for all, including the rich. TCes that are too low in the upper brackets ultimately backfire on everyone.

              Don’t agree with you one the
              trade wars and confronting China. The trade deficit is going to hurt the country as badly as the tax cuts. There are ways to reduce the deficit in addition to tariffs and those should be pursued but tariffs on certain industries are necessary and something we have always had.

              Argument that democrats can’t compromise now becausd iof future demands us just a bogus argument. Trump could make the same argument about giving in to the republicans.

              Cingress should come up with a budget , pass it and over ride the veto if there is one. Congress has that power and they could use it. That will may be how this standiff ends.

        • Posted January 9, 2019 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

          If the Democrats don’t want this slur, they should stop using the word “undocumented”.

          • GBJames
            Posted January 9, 2019 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

            Come on, Maya. Srsly?

            • Tim Harris
              Posted January 14, 2019 at 6:25 am | Permalink

              But she won’t come on. You should know this by now, GBJ!

              • GBJames
                Posted January 14, 2019 at 6:55 am | Permalink

                I do, I do.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:38 am | Permalink

        Trump’s like the Rosato brothers, taking hostages. 🙂

        It’s a NY mob thing. In this case, the hostages are federal employees, and everyone who depends upon them.

        • XCellKen
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

          Perhaps a cop will walk into the bar and interrupt this hostage taking ?

  23. Michael Fisher
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    A sweet bet at Bookmaker.com that I missed
    “How many false statements will President Trump make during Tuesday night’s televised address?”
    They’re paying out for the ‘over’:

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:45 am | Permalink

      That was a sweet bet; I’d’ve set the over/under line at least a full lie higher.

      Personally, I figured he was good for at least an even half dozen.

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:55 am | Permalink

        Yes – Bookmaker.com took a hit on that one – maybe intentionally, it was a nice ‘loss leader’ for them

  24. Posted January 9, 2019 at 7:42 am | Permalink

    The Senate voted 100-0 for CR before Trump said he’d shut it all down over the stupid wall. They have a veto proof majority to open the government. Yes this is Trump, but it’s also McConnell for not bringing it to a vote, forcing the President to veto, and then overriding it.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:56 am | Permalink

      McConnell seems to have made up his mind he’s not going to go out of his way to embarrass Trump, but he’s not going to toss Trump a life-ring either.

      Ol’ Mitch may as well go out to the majority leader’s seat on the senate floor and do like Pontius Pilate, by making a big show of Purell-ing his hands of the matter. 🙂

  25. Posted January 9, 2019 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    I personally don’t see why the wall needs to be attached to the rest of the budget. As long as that’s the case, the impasse will continue, and funding for various benefits will continue to run out, much to the expense of many Americans. I think that there should be two separate votes in Congress: one on the budget without the wall, and one on the wall all by itself.

    • Historian
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:11 am | Permalink

      Yes, there is no need for the issue of border security, which includes the question of the wall, to be bundled with the funding of other departments unrelated to immigration. The Democrats have proposed such an approach (fund Homeland Security by a continuing resolution until February 8th and all other departments until the end of the fiscal year), but Trump and his lackey, Mitch McConnell, have rejected it. The government could be re-opened today, but this won’t happen until Trump caves.

    • Posted January 9, 2019 at 11:38 am | Permalink

      Of course Trump really doesn’t want to negotiate on anything. His idea on deal-making is to bully his opponent. As others have said, it is doubtful he really wants to solve the immigration problem anyway. He only wants the wall as a statement against immigrants.

  26. Randall Schenck
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    I wondered, why am I seeing a posting at almost 9 pm on a site that is usually in bed by 5. Oh yes, big time difference to Hawaii.

    Oh well, leave a note as it were. It seems everyone here misses what should be the most serious trump fumble here and that is probably because by now the presidency in the U.S. is thought of more like a character on happy days. So low and degraded that no one pays any attention. Just another trip to the garbage can.

    The prime time oval office has never been used for anything but important and serious events that need the attention of all. Check back and you will see this. But here we are with this clown, using the space to hold a 10 minute political campaign speech complete with mailed political spam to all in the base asking them to send $5 bucks to the campaign to reelect. There was no debate here, and no new information that he has not blown out to his base many times before. It was simple and disgusting and nothing else. The fact that the democrats even showed up was a negative for them.

    • GBJames
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:54 am | Permalink

      The biggest issue, IMO, is that the networks all gave tRump free airtime for this fiasco after denying Obama time to talk about immigration reform in 2014.

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:19 am | Permalink

        Well, you are right. I think maybe they were sucked into doing it because of the chance the clown would call a national emergency and steal the money for the wall. This was not likely to fly but he did give hints he might do this and they were sucked in to show this pathetic 10 minute campaign rerun.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:05 am | Permalink

      Personally, I go back to presidents and prime-time Oval Office addresses all the way to JFK and the Cuban Missile Crisis.

      Ain’t make presidential crises (or US presidents, for that matter) like they usta, are they?

      • Claudia Baker
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:17 am | Permalink

        Someone in the New York Times called it Trump’s “edifice complex”. I must have a bigly wall!

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:35 am | Permalink

        Exactly. I believe it was used by a president to resign – Nixon and basically Johnson. Used by Bush to talk about his war on terrorism. Kennedy as you said. The idea that some put out, the democrats are not negotiating is a laugh. A guy manufactures a self made crisis and fills it with lies about the facts concerning the boarder and we expect negotiating? Then shuts down government keeping hundreds of thousands from getting paid and we think negotiate. I would rather have negotiated with Hitler.

  27. Blue
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    Yeah, I saw all nine minutes o’Dump’s and the entirety of the Gothic Pair.

    Here is Tennessee Free Press ‘Toonist Mr Clay Bennett’s drawing – take thereof:
    https://twitter.com/BennettCartoons/status/1082988678891405312 … …

    Blue

  28. rickflick
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    sub

  29. Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    Very little debate over whether 200 miles of addition fence plus almost four hundred additional border agents and canine patrols to add to and repair the 600 miles of fence approved by the democrats in the past. The border security people have asked for this fence to add security to spots if high illegal crossings and drug trafficking.

  30. Posted January 9, 2019 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    Agreeing with others here, I’m puzzled by the claim that “The Democrats don’t have a serious proposal on the table.” Their serious proposal is the continuation of the existing funding for maintenance of the existing border infrastructure, because this whole “emergency” is fictional, manufactured for political gain. The idea that they secretly favor open borders is a right-wing talking point that is clearly untrue (and I say that as a libertarian who does, in fact, favor open borders). The lack of xenophobia and racism on the Democratic side of the debate is not the same thing as advocacy of open borders; it is, at best, advocacy of basic humanitarianism. The Democrats also have serious proposals on the table regarding such related issues as the Dreamers; those proposals have been ignored by the Republicans. The fact of the matter is that you don’t get to pass legislation unless you can get a sufficient number of members of Congress to vote for it; every President throughout U.S. history has had to deal with that basic fact. This is the first President (as far as I know) who has chosen to have a temper tantrum and shut down the government because he doesn’t want to accept that reality. That temper tantrum, and the shutdown, is not the Democrats’ fault; they are not obliged to support Trump’s political agenda. And they should not cave in to what is, effectively, blackmail. So far, so good.

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted January 10, 2019 at 6:53 am | Permalink

      I would think that should be a good reason for impeaching the bastard.

      I don’t know the legalities of it, but the fact that he’s prepared to do so much wanton damage to millions of Americans, to the American constitutional structure, and to make the US pretty much a laughing stock in the eyes of the rest of the world (it’s the sort of antics you’d expect in a banana republic), simply to satisfy his own ego, surely makes him totally unfit to govern.

      cr

  31. Mehul Shah
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

    Bernie’s response was far better,

    • GBJames
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

      That is quite good, indeed.

      • Posted January 9, 2019 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

        Yes, it’s a real speech. Much, much better than the amateurish speech delivered by Pelosi and Schumer.

        • GBJames
          Posted January 9, 2019 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

          I don’t agree that Pelosi/Schumer were amateurish. I do think they suffered from having the two of them talk. I understand why they did so since each house of congress has a role in this thing. IMO they were professional and “adult”, presenting information relevant to the immediate situation.

          Bernie, OTH, spoke to the deeper situation. That, I think, makes his response the better one.

          • Posted January 9, 2019 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

            Bernie spoke to the bigger issue but he also had passion and showed genuine disgust with what Trump is doing. Even the production values of Bernie’s speech were hugely better. Pelosi and Schumer looked like “American Gothic”, as many online have commented. Bernie was better at many levels.

            • Mark R.
              Posted January 9, 2019 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

              Pelosi and Schumer don’t come off well on TV…never have. At the same time, their segment got higher ratings (by far) than Trump’s segment. I think most people (including me) can’t stand much more than 30 seconds of Trump’s lies and demagoguery

              I liked what Bernie said too. They should have let him give the rebuttal. He wasn’t restricted on time though, either; this was an advantage since a longer response is needed to thouroughly state and explain the fundamental issues, as well as solutions to mitigate them. I hope a lot of people will watch this.

              • Diane G
                Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

                Well said, Mark. Loved Bernie’s speech but this is not the time to pit democrats against each other. I realize there’s an important election in the offing, but the shutdown is an immediate crisis and for once it would be be nice if we presented a united front.

              • Posted January 9, 2019 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

                Are you thinking that Bernie took a different position from Pelosi & Schumer? If so, I missed it. AFAIK, the difference was in presentation and emphasis only.

              • Diane G
                Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

                No, Paul, I was referring to the criticism here of Schumer & Pelosi. (Wasn’t it just a week or two ago that we were praising them to high… uh, ardently?)

          • Diane G
            Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

            Agree.

            (With GBH, up here a ways…)

            • Diane G
              Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

              Damn. GBJ! Make one remark about someone’s typos and this always happens….

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

                Muphrys rides again!

              • Diane G
                Posted January 9, 2019 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

                Ype.

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:35 pm | Permalink

                😂

            • infiniteimprobabilit
              Posted January 10, 2019 at 6:59 am | Permalink

              Hi Diane, you do know that in the UK ‘GBH’ stands for Grievous Bodily Harm, i.e. the legal charge for serious assault?

              What a mistake-a to make-a.

              😎

              cr

              • GBJames
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 7:05 am | Permalink

                You say that just to hurt me.

              • infiniteimprobabilit
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 7:14 am | Permalink

                I do hope, GB*J*, that you were being a little bit facetious in your comment?

                Because I was. Being facetious, that is.

                I have great respect for you (even when we butt heads) and would never attempt to commit GBH on GBJ. 🙂

                cr

              • GBJames
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 7:16 am | Permalink

                You couldn’t see my tongue in my cheek? 😉

              • Diane G
                Posted January 10, 2019 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

                Well, then, I guess my comment was actually Freudian. 😉

      • Posted January 9, 2019 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

        Yes, that’s the kind of response that should have been broadcast.

        It doesn’t take a genius to see that. Yet the dems put out a lame response instead. I bet the dems are going to blow it in 2020

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

      Reminds me why I got behind Bernie from the get-go last time around, soon as he announced in May 2015.

      I’m not so enthused about the codger for 2020, though I have no problem with him getting into the race, raising issues some other candidates may be too timid to broach.

    • Posted January 9, 2019 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for sharing this excellent response.

    • Nicolaas Stempels
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

      He sounded, what shall we call it,…presidential?

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted January 10, 2019 at 7:11 am | Permalink

        Yep, that struck me too.

        I note he didn’t hesitate to call tRump a liar. Quite correctly IMO.

        I may be mistaken, but I think this is a new phenomenon. In the past, politicians have usually preferred to soften it a bit, and talk about ‘misstatements’ or ‘inaccuracies’ in their opponents positions. But then most politicians have tried to sound credible. I think what has changed is that tRump lies so recklessly, so blatantly, and with so little regard for credibility or consistency, that using any word other than ‘lies’ is untenable.

        cr

  32. Mark R.
    Posted January 9, 2019 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

    Trump is a fool on a fool’s errand. He admitted freely to the world that he’d be proud of a shutdown over border security. He welcomed it and said “he wouldn’t blame you” speaking to Schumer. Then he tries to spin it as Democrats’ fault on this low-energy address. He looked defeated and wary and beyond unconvincing. I had no problem with Pelosi’s and Schumer’s response. It was rational, thoughtful and firm. What do people expect? It was just a rebuttal, not the Gettysburg Address.

    At the same time, the loaded gun of a “National Emergency” is still sitting at Trump’s feet. He can pick it up and use it whenever he wants. After seeing the major networks (including Fox) basically tell him he failed at convincing anyone and looked weak, “saying nothing new”, he’ll probably have more incentive to use that gun. It won’t ultimately work; instead it will be just another pile of shit added to the cat 5 shit storm Trump has already whipped up.

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted January 9, 2019 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

      Very good review. Just to update to this subject, a meeting of the two sides was just completed. Trump in fact, got up and walked out of the meeting. He did so after asking Pelosi if, they opened up the govt. would she then go for a wall in 30 days. A stupid question for sure but she answered correctly, no. So he walked out and the republicans are all singing the same lying song. Poor us, poor us. It is childish and disgusting. This entire affair is purely political and has no justification. Certainly not to put 900,000 people out with no paycheck.

      • Mark R.
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

        Yeah, I think standing firm is the only way forward for Pelosi and the Democrats. They really have nothing to lose. The polls are showing the majority don’t blame Dems and the majority don’t want a wall. Trump’s fooling himself if he thinks he’s ever going to win this fight.

        And those 900,000 will miss their first paycheck this Friday. Once it starts hurting people where it counts (not that it hasn’t already, but the 900,000 are more tangible) the pressure on Mitch will become unbearable. Republicans are already peeling away from him.

        “Poor us, poor us”
        Victim hood is the only tactic Republicans have left. Its also the main tactic of the religionists. It’s no wonder those two tribes have become allies. And yes, it is childish and disgusting.

        • darrelle
          Posted January 10, 2019 at 7:08 am | Permalink

          I’ve said it many times over the past several years, Mitch McConnell is the worst person in the country.

      • Diane G
        Posted January 9, 2019 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

        Childish indeed! “If I don’t get my way, I’m taking my ball and going home!” *sticks out tongue*

        • Zetopan
          Posted January 13, 2019 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

          “If I don’t get my way, I’m taking my ball and going home!”

          And it’s not even his ball!

          • Diane G
            Posted January 13, 2019 at 11:57 pm | Permalink

            Good point. 😀


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