Donald Trump came before the American public the other night with a deal he was proposing for Democrats to re-open the government. On the surface it says a lot…and it shows why he’s the ultimate dealmaker.
Let’s take a quick look at what he said. He wants to get $5.7 billion for the wall…or fence…or added border protection in the form of a barrier along the southern border. That’s been his line in the sand all along. He is giving over 700,000 DACA kids a three year reprieve in hopes Congress can get their problem solved in that time. He’s also giving those that moved to the United States temporarily when natural disasters hit their homeland another three years to live here without the threat of deportation.
He promised $800 million in humanitarian assistance to help those in need along the southern border…most likely those folks in the caravan from Central America. He would hire 2,750 new Border Patrol agents, and also 75 new judicial teams that could speed up the backlog of 900,000 cases of illegal immigrants.
It drew fire from both sides. Nancy Pelosi said that it wouldn’t get passed individually in the House, and together it’s a “non-starter”, while the conservative Heritage Foundation said that Trump was going too far in the negotiations as far as a starting point was concerned.
In truth, you have to start negotiations somewhere. Trump wasn’t going to start it at “Give me $5.7 billion for a wall” because that would have not given the left anything. He was rather generous, yes…but he wanted to show that he wasn’t the one to blame in the shutdown. I think he accomplished that part of it.
It boils down to a simple fact. If the Democrats decide to come back to the table and start negotiating based on Trump’s latest offer to re-open the government, they are going to be seen as the winners, and if there is no deal reached, Trump will most likely be blamed. If however, they balk at it, as apparently they are going to do, the Democrats are going to be viewed as the ones that are holding this thing up because they won’t even talk. If that’s the case, watch their whole strategy backfire on them.
It’s already the longest “shutdown” in US history, though I hold my nose when I call it that. You don’t shutdown a small portion of the government and call it a shutdown. You call it maybe a slowdown. If it’s a shutdown, Congress shouldn’t be getting paid, especially if Border Patrol agents, Air Traffic Controllers, and Capitol Police, Secret Service agents, and others in the government aren’t getting paid. That, I would have to lay squarely at the feet of every Democrat in Congress. At least if they decide they don’t even want to negotiate. Then it becomes their fault.
Carry on world…you’re dismissed!