March 21 2018

Trump blames fellow Republican leaders for debt ceiling 'mess'

March 21 2018, 10:08 | Van Peters

Drug smugglers are continuing to use waterway routes, known as transit zones, to move drugs into the USA across the border. That's fair enough; it's nearly certainly his biggest accomplishment to date, and certainly so if we're just talking about things he got through Congress (or, in this case, the Senate).

Now the president says unless there's funding for the border wall in whatever budget measure Congress passes, he won't sign it.

Over and over again he said just that; it was consistently his biggest applause line in a stump speech packed with applause lines.

Now - while this remains a centerpiece of his populist speeches - he accepts USA funds will pay for construction, and Mexico will be forced to re-pay in some way later.

How weakened is President Trump?

This failure is even more remarkable considering his Republican Party controls the White House and both houses of Congress.

Trump's practice of profiting from public office through his Washington hotel and other commercial properties raises profound ethical and constitutional questions.

"On funding the government, Republicans in Congress will get no benefit from a shutdown fight over building a border wall". Whether that legislative strategy would have worked can not be known. They protect themselves and not "the people".

Democrats know full well that most Republicans don't want to be on the hook for an untold billions to build a border wall, either. The physical wall is Mr. Trump's personal preoccupation.

If the Republicans do get something done, the president can say, "You couldn't have done it without me". Mexican officials, in no uncertain terms, rejected Trump's absurd demand that Mexico pay for it. He made no mention of the border wall. "We have to", Trump told the raucous crowd. Are our efforts paying dividends?

President Barack Obama's much-hyped restoration of relations with Cuba was a bet that diplomatic and economic engagement would, over time, accomplish what 50 years of boycott did not: a rebirth of political freedom on the island. And doing that through the border wall is something that's important.

The president's sharp words underscored the perilous state of play as Congress heads into the fall without a clear plan to take care of its most important piece of business: If it does not increase the nation's $19.9 trillion borrowing limit, the government could be unable to pay its bills, jarring financial markets and leading to other harsh consequences. She adds: "anybody who is surprised by that has not been paying attention for two years".

When Ruddy was pressed that Trump doesn't appear to have taken his counsel on the McConnell attacks, Ruddy asserted, "The reason is, he's been under such attack by the press". Every judge needs a confirmation hearing by the Senate Judiciary Committee, and that committee is unusually busy early in every presidency dealing with nominations for executive branch positions in the Department of Justice. "He can veto a bill without it, but then he'd be responsible for the shutdown". But he just can't make them pay up.

The White House is pushing to move on tax reform this year. "That's never happened before; it would be unprecedented and that could be a major shock to the economy", Powell said in an interview with CNBC during a conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

But all of the spin in the world can't polish this turd of a campaign promise.

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