Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell must really want to avoid blame if there’s another government shutdown because he somehow got Politico to run a ludicrously thin series of claims about his reluctance. But McConnell may be irrelevant because Donald Trump’s latest tweets suggest he might be laying the groundwork to retreat and declare victory.
”McConnell has made no secret of how much he hates shutdowns, particularly the most recent and historic partial funding lapse,” Burgess Everett reports. Don’t tell me what he says he hates, tell me what he does to prevent what he says he hates. And during the recent shutdown, that was basically nothing. Oh, but this time around it will be different, supposedly. We’re told McConnell told the negotiators, “We’re praying for you. Get this done.” Whoo, boy, no one ever used “we’re praying for you” unless it was truly important.
But Trump’s Thursday morning tweets repeatedly insist that “Large sections of WALL have already been built with much more either under construction or ready to go” and “wall is already being built.” In reality, 40 miles of replacement for existing barriers have either been built or are under construction, while a whopping 14 miles of new barrier is planned to be started in February, using existing designs rather than Trump’s beloved prototypes. But you know what? If Trump wants to claim victory and use that lie to avoid another government shutdown, that would be fine. Because Mitch McConnell sure wouldn’t stand in the way of a shutdown.