As the partial government shutdown enters its second week over a lack of funding for key government agencies including the Department of Homeland Security, Democrats and POTUS Donald Trump appear to be as far apart on the issue that led to it — funding for a border wall — as they were when it began.
And of course, the predictable Washingtonian blame game over who’s “fault” it is has begun in earnest.
POTUS Donald Trump, though he once said he would “own” the shutdown during a sit-down open meeting with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and likely incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., now when he tweets on the issue he uses the hashtag #SchumerShutdown.
Democrats, meanwhile, are placing the blame squarely on the president. Incoming House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., made it clear over New Year’s weekend that he plans on introducing a bill Jan. 3 when Congress reconvenes that will fund the shuttered government agencies but wall funding is “not an option,” The National Sentinel reported.
Regardless who is to blame, there is one thing that both sides used to agree on and that was what POTUS Trump wants: A physical barrier along as much of the U.S.-Mexico border as possible, and frankly, that point needs to be driven home early and often throughout this debate.
In 2006, then-Democratic Sens. Barack Obama (Illinois) and Hillary Clinton (New York), along with Schumer, all voted to support the Secure Fence Act of 2006, which — among other things — authorized double-layer fencing along 700 miles of the U.S. border, as noted by The Daily Wire.
And they weren’t the only Democrats to vote for it; the legislation passed the Senate by a vote of 80-19. That was the 109th Congress; Republicans controlled the Senate by a 55-45 majority, so the GOP did not have a filibuster-proof margin.
In 2009, Schumer praised his vote and talked of supporting border security. At the 6th Annual Immigration Law and Policy Conference at Georgetown University, he discussed the seven principles he said made up a piece of border security legislation he wanted passed that would include construction of hundreds of miles of fencing, making the border “far more secure” by creating a “significant barrier to illegal immigration.”
“The first of these seven principles is that illegal immigration is wrong, plain and simple,” Schumer said, going on to criticize the Left-wing verbiage his party now uses frequently.
“When we use phrases like ‘undocumented workers,’ we convey a message to the American people that their government is not serious about combating illegal immigration, which the American people overwhelmingly oppose,” he continued.
“People who enter the United States without our permission are illegal aliens, and illegal aliens should not be treated the same as people who entered the United States legally,” Schumer continued. “Any immigration solution must recognize that we must do as much as we can to gain operational control of our borders as soon as possible.”
He also bragged about how much border fencing had been added when he talked about the “progress” made through legislation he and other Democrats supported.
“This progress includes…construction of 630 miles of border fence that create a significant barrier to illegal immigration on our southern land border,” he said.
Chuck Schumer in 2009:
-Americans don't like illegal immigration
-"Illegal immigration is wrong"
-People illegally in the U.S. are "illegal aliens," not "undocumented"
-Border fence made the southern border "far more secure…created a significant barrier to illegal immigration" pic.twitter.com/zoVyEgdrTC
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) December 28, 2018
Now, of course, Schumer is singing a different tune. “I want to be crystal clear. There will be no additional appropriations to pay for the border wall. It’s done,” he said in mid-December, The Hill reported. So is incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California, who left the White House on Wednesday without a deal on a spending bill that includes funding for a physical barrier.
Because Donald Trump wants it.
Just to be crystal clear: Democrats who loathe the president and do not want to see him succeed are now firmly opposed to border security. There’s no other way to spin it. — J. D. Heyes
A version of this story first appeared at NewsTarget.
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