Chuck Schumer, Democrats defy Trump government shutdown threat

December 16, 2018

Democrats dug in their heels Sunday on President Trump’s threat to shut down the government unless he gets money for his border wall, saying if the president makes good on his demand the American people will suffer.

But the White House contends American citizens are already suffering with or without a shutdown because of the increasing number of illegal immigrants entering the country.

The two sides showed no sign of compromise Sunday, with just four days left to broker an agreement before the federal government partially shuts down.

“We should not let a temper tantrum threats push us in the direction of doing something even our Republican colleagues know is wrong,” Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer told NBC.

The New York Democrat said Republicans in Congress “have to have the guts” to tell the president he’s wrong for refusing to fund the government unless he gets $5 billion for his border wall.

“President Trump should understand there are not the votes for the wall in the House or the Senate. He is not going to get the wall in any form,” he said.

And the top Democrat on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Rep. Elijah Cummings, Maryland Democrat, said voters want the government to help them, not hurt them, suggesting a shutdown will politically damage Republicans.

“Whenever I hear a president say to the American people at Christmas time ‘I am going to shut down your government,’ it pains me because I know it’s going to make a bad Christmas for a lot of people,” he told CNN.

But White House adviser Stephen Miller said the president will do “whatever is necessary” to get the money to build the border wall.

“They can either choose to fight for Americans working class or to promote illegal immigration. You can’t do both,” Mr. Miller told CBS.

Update hourly