- President Donald Trump reportedly said he knew he was going to be blamed for the federal government shutdown.
- Democratic leaders and the White House blamed each other for the failed Senate vote that helped trigger the shutdown on Friday night.
President Donald Trump reportedly told aides that he believed he was going to be blamed for the federal government shutdown, according to a New York Times report published Friday night.
At midnight on Friday, the federal government began it’s partial shutdown, the first in more than four years, after the Senate failed to pass a vote on a short-term funding bill.
Although Trump met with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York to discuss the bill earlier Friday – at one point even appearing to reach an agreement – Schumer and the Oval Office ultimately failed to reach a consensus and that negotiation fell apart, the Times said.
Trump reportedly expressed to his aides that regardless of how the wheeling and dealing in Congress played out, he knew he’d likely get the blame.
Speaking on the Senate floor after midnight, Schumer did just that.
“It’s almost as if you were rooting for a shutdown,” Schumer said, referring to Trump. “And now we’ll have one. And the blame should crash entirely on President Trump’s shoulders.”
“This will be called the ‘Trump shutdown,'” Schumer continued. “This will be called the ‘Trump shutdown’ because there is no one, no one, who deserves the blame for the position we find ourselves in more than President Trump.”
All but five Democrats voted to block the short-term bill that would have sustained federal funding at current levels, called a continuing resolution (CR). Most cited the fact that the measure did not include a permanent solution for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) immigration program.
Moments before the deadline, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders attempted to mitigate the fallout with a statement she shared on Twitter, calling the government’s funding lapse the “Schumer Shutdown.”
“This is the behaviour of obstructionist losers, not legislators,” Sanders said in the statement. When Democrats start paying our armed forces and first responders we will reopen negotiations on immigration reform.”
Schumer continued to admonish Trump on the Senate floor: “Tomorrow marks a year to the day President Trump took the oath of office on the Capitol steps. Unfortunately, a Trump shutdown would be a perfect encapsulation of the chaos he has unleashed on our government.”
Bob Bryan contributed reporting.
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