Trump Appears To Accept Budget And Border Wall Compromise

President Trump now appears to accept the compromise worked out by Congress to avoid another shutdown even though he's not pleased with it.

The deal to avert another shutdown, the details of which haven’t been fully made public, could be closer to passage than it seemed yesterday as lawmakers came out in favor of it and the President signaled that, while not pleased with the agreement, he may agree to it:

The threat of another government shutdown receded Tuesday as lawmakers lined up behind a fragile border security compromise and President Trump predicted that federal agencies would stay open.

Trump did not publicly endorse the bipartisan agreement, which offers just a fraction of the money he’s sought for a U.S.-Mexico border wall. But with a shutdown deadline looming Friday at midnight, the president suggested he might be able to accept the deal, saying he could take other steps to fund his wall.

“Am I happy at first glance? The answer is no, I’m not, I’m not happy,” Trump told reporters around midday at the White House, as he met with Cabinet members.

“It’s not going to do the trick, but I’m adding things to it, and when you add whatever I have to add, it’s all going to happen where we’re going to build a beautiful, big, strong wall,” Trump said.

Hours later, after speaking on the phone with Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.), Trump offered a more positive take. He praised Shelby in a tweet as “hard working,” welcomed increased border security spending in the deal apart from the wall and wrote, “Regardless of Wall money, it is being built as we speak!”

As Trump warmed to the emerging legislation, the House prepared to vote on it as soon as Wednesday evening, according to Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.), and action in the Senate could follow Thursday.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) also briefed Trump, later telling reporters that he hopes to have the president’s support, because “he’s got a pretty good deal here.”

The compromise, which bipartisan negotiators struck late Monday after reviving stalled talks, includes $1.375 billion for 55 miles of new fences along the border, short of the $5.7 billion Trump had sought for 234 miles of steel walls.

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle claimed that as a win — Democrats because the figure agreed to is much lower than Trump’s original request, and Republicans because it does give Trump the ability to build some new segments of barriers.

The barriers would be targeted for the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, a priority area for the Border Patrol. The deal also includes compromise language on funding immigrant detention by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

Some conservatives attacked the plan in withering terms, but there was a growing acceptance among others on the right that it was likely to become law.

“I think he will sign it, I think the president will sign it,” said Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), a leader of the conservative Freedom Caucus. “I think he will do so reluctantly. And then obviously have to use executive actions to secure our borders.”

It wasn’t clear exactly what executive actions Trump might try to take. One option White House officials have strongly considered is to accept the money Congress appropriates for the wall, then take additional steps using executive authority to redirect potentially billions of dollars more.

Trump has threatened to declare a national emergency at the southern border, a move that could allow him to bypass Congress and use the military to build the wall. That idea has run into bipartisan opposition, but some GOP lawmakers offered support for the more limited approach of redirecting spending.

Democrats said they would challenge such efforts, but several Republicans described the money the deal offers for border barriers as a “down payment” that the president could build on.

In an update this morning, CNN is reporting that Trump is prepared to sign the bill but it’s unclear if he also intends to try get additional wall funding through other means. In any case, it’s probable that whatever action the President tries to take outside of the deal to fund his border wall, whether its the declaration of a “national emergency” as has been threatened in the past or the redirection of money allocated for other purposes, will end up being challenged in Congress or in the courts. Even if that happens, though, the passage of this deal, along with any supplemental he might take, would allow the President to claim victory to his supporters. At least initially, it appears that he might even be able to get away with it. While some of the President’s favorite commentators, such as Sean Hannity and Ann Coulter have already criticized the deal, others, such as Rush Limbaugh, have been more circumspect and this could well provide the President with sufficient cover to get away with agreeing to this deal and avoiding another politically disastrous shutdown. Additionally, the signals out of the White House appear to be indicating that the President did not want to see another shutdown and that he was inclined to accept the agreement Congress has negotiated.

The irony of all this, of course, is that the deal we’re looking at now is not substantially different from the one that the President had agreed to in December and which the Senate had approved by unanimous consent only to see the President pull the rug out from under them and say he would not agree to any deal without coverage for his border wall in the amount of $5.7 billion. It was due to that move, of course, that the government shutdown began on December 22nd and lasted for the next five weeks before finally being resolved at the end of January. Now, with the deadline to avert another shutdown looming, the President has a choice before him and, at least for the moment, it appears that he’s inclined to accept a deal that he could have had two months ago that would have avoided two months of chaos in Washington and across the country. To say that he lost this round is an understatement. While it’s unclear what impact this will have in the long-term politically, it is clear that the President and the White House badly miscalculated and that they ended up forcing a shutdown that could have been avoided two months ago with the same deal he’s agreeing to now.

So much for The Art Of The Deal, huh?

Update: Now even Sean Hannity appears to be backing down from the deadset opposition to the deal.

FILED UNDER: Borders and Immigration, Congress, Deficit and Debt, Donald Trump, Politicians, US Politics, ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Michael Reynolds says:

    I think he should hold out. If he can just have another round of negotiation he’ll art of the deal himself down to zero dollars.

    This isn’t a compromise, this is Nancy Pelosi, like some Tarantino heroine, kicking a bleeding Trump up one side of the room and down the other.

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  2. Neil J Hudelson says:

    My fingers are crossed Trump will sign this and avoid another shutdown. The 800,000+ federal workers deserve much, much better than this.

    That said, I was amused when I clicked on the OTB article from the last go around.
    From today’s post:

    In an update this morning, CNN is reporting that Trump is prepared to sign the bill but it’s unclear if he also intends to try get additional wall funding through other means.

    From last month’s post:

    Politico has more, including what appears to be a clear signal from the White House that the President will sign off on the bill.

    I think it will come down to how loud under-Presidents Coulter and Hannity yell.

    I was also curious as to what Trump “won” with his shutdown. The budget deal the Republicans passed in December, and which Trump vetoed? $1.6 Billion for border security.

    This week’s budget deal? $1.37 Billion for border security. Unless I’m mistaken, Trump lost $230,000,000.

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  3. OzarkHillbilly says:

    So much for The Art Of The Deal, huh?

    So much winning, I just can’t wait for some of the usual suspects to come and explain how the DEMs got taken..

  4. gVOR08 says:

    Trump appears trapped between his signature campaign promise and reality. But Republicans have a way to square the circle. Lie. Coulter and Hannity are a little slow on the uptake, but apparently Limbaugh gets it. Trump’s already launched the lie with his Finish the Wall slogan.

  5. Sleeping Dog says:

    Let’s see if he actually signs the deal. In December the WH signaled that he would sign the Senate bill when presented to him, but…

    I’ve seen some analysis that claims that this deal is not as beneficial to Tiny as the December one, it seems that there are additional restrictions as to how the wall/fence dollars are spent and a cap on the number of beds in the internment camps.

  6. Joe says:

    @Neil J Hudelson:
    I feel like Trump is playing the will he/won’t he sign like a television reveal. “Tune in Thursday!” It’s all just a ratings hype. Yup, that’s our government today.

  7. CSK says:

    @gVOR08:

    Make that a “big, beautiful wall.” He’s back to that again.

  8. James Pearce says:

    To say that he lost this round is an understatement.

    Congress is going to fund Trump’s wall, not with $5.7 billion but with 10 figures nonetheless, and Trump can still steal the rest from other sources.

    We’re gonna be standing in the shade of a border wall with a sign that says “Provided by Donald J. Trump” and people are still going to point to some poll telling us he “lost.”

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  9. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    Still waiting for Pearce to tell us about Individual-1 winning and getting his wall.

  10. @Neil J Hudelson:

    Hannity and Limbaugh appear to be bowing to the inevitable, as does Laura Ingraham. Only Ann Coulter is speaking out against this.

  11. @James Pearce:

    The President’s ability to redirect funds from other sources is severely limited and governed by statute. If he tries to do it, it’s likely that we’ll see lawsuits. And we know how the President has done when it comes to lawsuits.

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  12. Kathy says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Only Ann Coulter is speaking out against this.

    Oh, what will President Coulter do? 😛

  13. James Pearce says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    If he tries to do it, it’s likely that we’ll see lawsuits.

    Oh I know. All the better to demagogue over it.

    “I wanna build a wall, but they won’t let me” is an easy sale for Trump, easier even than “Water, but with my name on it.”

    Saw this tweet from Patterico and it strikes me as about right:

    “Once lawmakers realized it’s not about getting it done, but instead about the ability to *say* he’s getting it done, everything fell into place.”

    I’d append that to read “some lawmakers.”

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  14. mattbernius says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Hannity and Limbaugh appear to be bowing to the inevitable, as does Laura Ingraham.

    Serious question, when do you think we’re going to hit this decade’s “I’m done carrying water” moment from Limbaugh?

  15. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @James Pearce:

    Congress is going to fund Trump’s wall

    No. Dennison’s wall is a 35′ high wall from sea to shining sea.
    What got funded was 55 miles of border fencing.
    There are plenty of people who might believe his nonsense, including you.
    That does not mean Congress is going to fund “Trump’s wall”.
    It only means that you (and other worshipers, like you) are dumb.

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  16. James Pearce says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    No. Dennison’s wall is a 35′ high wall from sea to shining sea.
    What got funded was 55 miles of border fencing.

    Which is 55 miles and $2 billion more than the “nothing” Dems were promising.

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  17. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:
    Like Trump, @Pearce lacks the strength of character to admit he’s been wrong. It seems to be a feature of Trumpies, weakness at their core. It’s why they’re always so afraid of everything.

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  18. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @James Pearce:
    @Michael Reynolds:
    If you don’t have the cojones to admit when you are wrong, you should really just STFU.

    Under the agreement, the barriers must adhere to currently deployed designs, including the “steel slats” that Trump has said could be acceptable for security.
    However, the proposal excludes the possibility of building wall based on any of the eight prototypes commissioned by Trump and built in the San Diego area.

  19. Teve says:

    If all 55 miles gets built Trump will have blocked 2.8% of the border. If that doesn’t solve the Illegal Terrorist Gang Trafficking Drug Crime Crisis, nothing will!!!

    {/CompleteIdiot}

    😀

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  20. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Teve:
    In a national emergency we have to take drastic measures, dude. If that means closing down 2.8% of the border then we have no choice. It’s not like Trump’s terrorists and gangbangers can, you know, go around.

  21. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    It’s not like Trump’s terrorists and gangbangers can, you know, go around.

    Or under; El Chapo had a 50 yard long tunnel under the fence.
    Or over; drones that can go up to 500′ and carry up to 600#s already exist.
    https://www.aerones.com/eng/firefighting_drone/
    If you have an idiot dictating policy, you’re going to get idiotic policies.

  22. Kylopod says:

    @James Pearce:

    Which is 55 miles and $2 billion more than the “nothing” Dems were promising.

    It is also less than a quarter of the amount that he would have gotten if Dems had taken your advice of giving him the full $5.7 billion in return for nothing but reopening the government, Threepio. And it is less than 6% of what he would have gotten if he’d taken the early-2018 offer. He negotiated his own demands away because he thought he could get bigger wins in the next round, like a guy who can’t quit the slots.

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  23. Teve says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl: 600 lb of cocaine would have a street value of 19 million dollars. What’s a high-end drone cost? A few grand? you could literally just fly them over and crash them on the ground every time and not give a shit.

  24. James Pearce says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Like Trump, @Pearce lacks the strength of character to admit he’s been wrong.

    It’s not about me.

    It’s about the $2 billion Democrats are going to be spending on Trump’s wall to avoid a second shutdown. You know there’s an election next year right?

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  25. Kathy says:

    Back in my elementary school days, a popular joke was to invite someone to play flip the coin, then telling them “heads I win, tails you lose.” I guess it was funny when you were 8.

    Someone here, and I wont’ mention who, is making the case that when El Cheeto flips the coin, he wins with heads, and the Democrats lose if it’s tails. So it’s hopeless to resist! Utterly, utterly hopeless!

    I’d call it an 8 year old’s understanding of a joke, taken far too seriously.

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  26. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Kylopod:

    And it is less than 6% of what he would have gotten if he’d taken the early-2018 offer.

    Dennison is the George Costanza of deal-making.
    And Pearce idolizes him soooooo bigly.

  27. @James Pearce:

    Based on the reports the $1.4 billion that will be allocated to “border security,” which is lower than what Trump could have gotten in December, will not be allocated toward a wall.

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  28. @mattbernius:

    Good question. I don’t know but we know its coming.

  29. Michael Reynolds says:

    @James Pearce:
    It’s 1.375 billion. If you’re rounding it’s 1 not 2.

    The only people who will be voting on this issue are confirmed culties. On a list of issues in the mid-terms IIRC it was in about 13th place. We will lose zero voters. If anyone loses voters it’ll be Trump and the GOP.

    But as always with you, Pearce, your ignorance is invincible. You’ll still be touting the wall 20 years from now, like a Seventh Day Adventist endlessly announcing the impending end of the world. You’re in the cult, all the way in, though you lie about it. You worship your orange father figure, you’ve invested your ego in toadying him. You can’t admit you’re wrong because you’re so fragile that without that lie to hold onto you don’t feel significant. So. . . absent father? Is that your mental kink?

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  30. Mikey says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    You’ll still be touting the wall 20 years from now, like a Seventh Day Adventist endlessly announcing the impending end of the world.

    As one who was raised in that particular cult, I consider this a very apt analogy indeed.

  31. James Pearce says:

    @Kylopod:

    He negotiated his own demands away because he thought he could get bigger wins in the next round, like a guy who can’t quit the slots.

    Just to be clear: I’m not arguing that Trump is some master negotiator, able to turn a shit sandwich into chocolate cake with the twinkle in his eye. He’s just better than the Dems, who are still a bit too full of themselves and still elbow-deep in their name-calling obnoxiousness.

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Based on the reports the $1.4 billion that will be allocated to “border security,” which is lower than what Trump could have gotten in December, will not be allocated toward a wall.

    Do you think that will stop him from calling it a wall and bragging about getting $1.4 billion from the Dems? I don’t.

    @Michael Reynolds:

    It’s 1.375 billion. If you’re rounding it’s 1 not 2.

    No, you’re rounding the wrong way. If they budgeted for $1.375 billion, they’ll spend $2 billion and if not, it may even be closer to the $5 billion Trump requested.

    Doesn’t matter anyway, because it was NEVER about the money.

    Also:

    You’re in the cult, all the way in, though you lie about it. You worship your orange father figure, you’ve invested your ego in toadying him.

    I’m not a Trump supporter, but so what if I was? At some point, you’re going to have to figure out that all this name-calling is going to get him a second term.

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  32. Mikey says:

    @James Pearce:

    Do you think that will stop him from calling it a wall and bragging about getting $1.4 billion from the Dems?

    He would lie about it and brag about it no matter what had actually happened. Nobody will be convinced except those already fully involved in the cult. Everyone else already knows what he says is nonsense.

    I’m not a Trump supporter

    *cough*bullshit*cough*

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  33. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @James Pearce:

    I’m not arguing that Trump is some master negotiator, able to turn a shit sandwich into chocolate cake with the twinkle in his eye.

    That’s exactly what you are arguing. You’re arguing that by not getting his wall, he is getting his wall…just because he says it is so.
    And that getting less than he could have gotten in 2018 is actually a win for him…because…you don’t like the democrats.
    You’re nonsensical.

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  34. Michael Reynolds says:

    @James Pearce:
    Calling you invincibly ignorant is going to get Trump re-elected? So, in addition to your psychic power to read the minds of light rail passengers, you are also a sort of Christ figure standing in for all the losers out there? And if we reject you we go to hell? Suffer the little Pearces?

    To reject Pearce is to ensure a Trump win. Only you can light the path to success. . . but like any charlatan, you refuse to get specific. It’s just, ‘believe in me, ye doubters, for only through Pearce can you come to the Father which is in heaven.’ Interestingly, that same vague demand for total acquiescence to whatever the hell it is you may eventually get around to saying is identical to Trump’s plea for total servility.

    You’re not just in the cult, you’re not just as stupid and dishonest as Trump, you’re as unhinged as well.

  35. wr says:

    @James Pearce: “Do you think that will stop him from calling it a wall and bragging about getting $1.4 billion from the Dems? I don’t.”

    If all he had to do to win was claim he’s building a wall even when he’s not, what was the point of shutting down the government and throwing all those people out of work for a month? He could have claimed this great victory at any time since it doesn’t require a basis in reality.

    But he did shut down the government trying to get more money, because he knows that outside the most zealous and under-informed of his followers, people are capable of separating fantasy from reality.

    A week ago he desperately needed billions to build a wall. Two nights ago he was already finishing the wall.

    You may choose to believe every contradictory thing he says, but that doesn’t make it reality, and it doesn’t make it a “win.”

  36. Kylopod says:

    @James Pearce:

    He’s just better than the Dems, who are still a bit too full of themselves and still elbow-deep in their name-calling obnoxiousness.

    Of course he’s better than the Dems in your eyes. He always will be, because you always make sure to define a Democratic “win” as whatever the Dems aren’t doing, even if it totally contradicts what you said earlier. During the shutdown you argued that the Dems should give Trump the full funding for a wall. Now that he got less than a quarter of that amount for a non-wall, you say this shows how bad the Dems are at negotiating. How can you call someone a bad negotiator for giving away far less than what you yourself had suggested they give?

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  37. Teve says:
  38. James Pearce says:

    @Mikey:

    *cough*bullshit*cough*

    Okay, so I’m a Trump supporter. Now what? Do you get to whip me with my own belt?

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    You’re arguing that by not getting his wall, he is getting his wall…just because he says it is so.

    That’s not what I’m arguing…. Shocking.

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Calling you invincibly ignorant is going to get Trump re-elected?

    Pretty much. We already have a name-caller in the White House.

  39. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @James Pearce:

    That’s not what I’m arguing…. Shocking.

    You have no idea what it is you’re saying…because, as always, you keep moving the goalposts…shocking.

  40. James Pearce says:

    @wr:

    You may choose to believe every contradictory thing he says, but that doesn’t make it reality, and it doesn’t make it a “win.”

    No one won, dude. The Republicans and the Dems are engaged in an epic handshake of stupid. The only ones who don’t see that are the homers.

    @Kylopod:

    Now that he got less than a quarter of that amount for a non-wall, you say this shows how bad the Dems are at negotiating.

    They shutdown the government for over a month because they’d only pay for 1/4 of the wall? C’mon….

  41. Teve says:

    remember the shut down when Trump didn’t go to Mar-A-Lago and play golf for a few weeks? Washington Post is saying now that Trump had a full room golf simulator installed in the White House at that time.

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  42. Kylopod says:

    @James Pearce: You didn’t answer my question: How can you call the Dems bad negotiators for giving away far less than what you suggested they should give?

  43. Neil J Hudelson says:

    They shutdown the government for over a month because they’d only pay for 1/4 of the wall? C’mon….

    The Office of Management and Budget estimates that the wall will cost $24.4 million per mile, or $59.8 billion. Trump’s White House claims $25 Billion.

    Assuming every dollar of the $1.37 billion will be put towards an actual wall [Which, as Doug notes, it won’t. At all. But Pearce is having a bad day so let’s give this one to him.], then let’s do some math:

    Trump wants $25 Billion. He asked for $5 Billion, or 25%. He’s getting 1.37 Billion, or 27% of $5 Billion, and five percent of the requested $25 Billion.

    Compared to the more accurate estimate of the wall cost, Trump is getting 2.2%.

    @James Pearce is either shockingly bad at math, or intentionally obtuse. Judging by his “$1.3 billion is actually $2 billion because [waves hands]” comment, I’m going with the latter.

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  44. Moosebreath says:

    @Neil J Hudelson:

    “James Pearce is either shockingly bad at math, or intentionally obtuse.”

    I think he’s both a floor wax and a dessert topping.

  45. Neil J Hudelson says:
  46. James Pearce says:

    @Kylopod:

    How can you call the Dems bad negotiators for giving away far less than what you suggested they should give?

    Because they shut down the government with this “I don’t have to give nothing” pose for over a month before going, “Okay, okay, okay” and handing over a lot of money to build a small piece of it.

    Who is this supposed to impress? Are you impressed?

  47. Scott F. says:

    @Kylopod:
    @Neil J Hudelson:

    His purpose here is not honest debate, so direct answers are counterproductive. His purpose here is self-aggrandizement and, sadly, he is shockingly good at it.

    I’m more a sporadic commenter at OTB, but I’ve found that with a quick scan of the portal page, the Comment counter provides a highly reliable predictor of those threads where he has jumped in. And it is easy to see why. It’s not that his comments are stupid as some have called them, including me. It’s that his comments are SO easily refutable and SO transparently dishonest in the context of all his other posts. That attribute in his posts is just a big, fat worm that reasonable debaters find nearly impossible not to take as bait.

    It just seems reasonable to expect someone to reflect on their own positions, in their own words, and acknowledge, as least once in awhile, that they may have been wrong, at least to some degree. “Maybe this time, the obvious incoherence is so evident and so egregious, he’ll have enough integrity to cop to his error,” we think.

    We need not give him the oxygen.

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  48. Scott F. says:

    @mattbernius:

    The smart play now for the maximal anti-immigrant punditry, like Limbaugh and Coulter, is to let this spending bill proceed and then to blame Trump’s 2020 reelection challenges on his failure to hold his ground on the Wall. It allows them to continue to argue that highly restrictive, punitive immigration policy is a winning position in the US despite all polling to the contrary.

  49. Neil Hudelson says:

    @Scott F.:

    Well put. I think the reason JP is so good at trolling is that he seems (or, at least, portays) to actually believe his BS. It’s been pointed out hundreds of times since 2016 that Pearce never, ever gives a direct answer on what Dems should be doing, only that what the Dems are doing is wrong (even if its what he directly called for earlier).

    When, say, Jenos comes along, everyone can tell he doesn’t really mean what he says. He’s committed to his tribe, so he’s going to give reality the middle finger and type up some transparent bullsh!t. But Pearce? He seems to honestly think that he’s consistent, that he’s erudite and thoughtful rather than reflexively contrarian.

    He’s Mark Halperin.

  50. Kylopod says:

    @James Pearce: You still didn’t address the point, which is that you yourself said the Dems should give Trump the full $5.7 billion. That was your bid! The Dems negotiated it down to less than a quarter of that, and less than even their opening demand before the shutdown. They gave away substantially less than you proposed they give. Therefore, if your argument is that Trump is a bad negotiator but the Dems are even worse, then it logically follows that the worst negotiator of all is you.

  51. Scott F. says:

    @Kylopod:

    The arguments then and now were even more disingenuous than you represent here.

    The argument then was that Trump was so irrational and such a “gangster” that he would never cave in on the shutdown, so the $5.7B Trump wanted for the Wall was immaterial in the face of the continuing challenges facing the furloughed federal employees. The argument then ignored the Democrats’ publicly stated position that to give in to Trump’s shutdown ploy was to doom these same federal employees to shutdowns being used over and over again whenever Trump or the Republicans wanted something they couldn’t pass as legislation.

    The argument now is that Trump is so far ahead of the Democrats that by accepting even a fraction of desired money and lying about it being a wall, he’s gotten what he wanted all along and whoever made the decision to initiate the shutdown is immaterial. The argument now ignores that everyone in the GOP – the Republican establishment, the Freedom Caucus, even Trump himself – is saying the last thing they want is another shutdown. This means a key political ploy of Republican Party has been effectively neutered until such time as memories of 2019 fade.

    Reasonably, you seek a coherent and genuine counter-argument. There’s nothing like that to be found from him.

  52. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @gVOR08: The difference is that Hannity and Coulter are bigoted Republican demagogues who’s business is to keep the base riled up about the terrorists crossing the Sonoran desert and the colored wimmin who be takin over de Congress. Limbaugh is a radio show host whose main schtick is convincing Dittoheads that Trump is some sort of Grandmaster of Nth dimension chess and Jedi mind control.

    It gives Limbaugh more flexibility in constructing the reality to meet the constraints of the current setting–in other words lying to credulous Dittoheads.

  53. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @mattbernius: I think the “done carrying water” moment has already passed. IIRC, Limbaugh was *non-aligned* and skeptical of the GOP chances until Trump got the nomination. When the choice became Trump or Hillary, he and Levin and Beck and the rest picked up their buckets and declared “I was with him all along.”

  54. An Interested Party says:

    Because they shut down the government…

    A successful argument really shouldn’t be spun from a false premise…as Trump himself declared, he shut down the government, not anyone else…

  55. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Teve: And part of the current Wall construction near Mission, TX is running afoul of the Religious Freedom Protection Act. link
    Eventually, someone’s also gonna realize that the church–for which the town of Mission is named–is a historic landmark (or should be declared one), too.

  56. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Moosebreath: I shouldn’t laugh at that because one of the restaurant chains the company I worked for in my university days had us stock a liquid shortening product for which the applications on the label included: deep frying, pan and griddle frying, seasoning steamed vegetables, and floor sealing.

  57. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    I do have to admit that the reappearance of Yuri Gagarin (?) speeds up my reading of the longer comment threads. On this thread, for example, I only read about half of the comments.

  58. Just Another Ex-Republican says:

    I don’t know why anyone bothers any more. Pearce gave it away by saying the Dems shut down the government. So it’s easy for him to then say “Dems lost”. But it’s all BS. The truth is the Dems said $0 for the wall, Trump said $5.7 billion, neither side compromised, and the government shut down. Then it was re-opened (with $0 initially) and the negotiation now has $1.37 billion for border security, most of which isn’t even related to a wall. It’s obvious to anyone with half a brain who lost more from their initial position.

    Still haven’t decided if Pearce doesn’t have half a brain, or just gets some sort of juvenile kick out of trolling everyone, but either way, he should be ignored. I try to skip his posts but I end up reading them all via quotes and other responses from the rest of you 🙂 Just ignore him-he’s not worth the aggravation.

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  59. PJ says:

    OTB needs a piefilter.

  60. James Pearce says:

    @Scott F.:

    His purpose here is not honest debate

    I’m just here for the pile-on.

  61. Teve says:

    @PJ: fuck yeah it do.

    But an advanced one that hides all the replies too.

  62. James Pearce says:

    @PJ:

    OTB needs a piefilter.

    For one dude? Please…

    Nearly every time I comment here, I wade through around 6-8 abusive replies: one guy promising to never read my comments again, two people mansplaining my own comment back to me, another person rearranging it until it’s something more ridiculous than anything I ever said or meant, and the rest just flat out calling me names, and you need a pie filter?

    Might I suggest instead acquiring a more robust intellectual bearing.

  63. An Interested Party says:

    …another person rearranging it until it’s something more ridiculous than anything I ever said or meant…

    Hey, that shouldn’t bother you too much, considering how often you move the goalposts…

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  64. @James Pearce:

    Do you think that will stop him from calling it a wall and bragging about getting $1.4 billion from the Dems? I don’t.

    Of course not, because he’s a pathological liar.

  65. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Just Another Ex-Republican: If you also skip over the comments with James Pearce in red at the top, you can achieve your goal. It’s much harder to do, but with practice, I figure I’ll get up to 90% eventually.

  66. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @James Pearce:

    Might I suggest instead acquiring a more robust intellectual bearing.

    You are projecting…again.

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  67. An Interested Party says:

    do a little further research and you will see that Barry started that (probably with our money) and President Trump improved it with his own money.

    If we are going to make comparisons, I don’t remember Obama constantly breaking the Emoluments Clause nor do I remember him using his position as president to enrich his various business interests…