Tuesday, January 08, 2019
The numbers are getting worse for Trump on the shutdown
And I doubt his speech will help them ...
A growing proportion of Americans blame President Donald Trump for a partial government shutdown that will cut off paychecks to federal workers this week, though Republicans mostly support his refusal to approve a budget without taxpayer dollars for the U.S.-Mexico border wall, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Tuesday.
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to reporters in the Rose Garden after a meeting with U.S. Congressional leaders about the U.S. government shutdown and border security at the White House in Washington, U.S., January 4, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Barria/File Photo
The national opinion poll, which ran from Jan. 1 to Jan. 7, found that 51 percent of adults believe Trump “deserves most of the blame” for the shutdown, which entered its 18th day on Tuesday. That is up 4 percentage points from a similar poll that ran from Dec. 21 to 25.
Another 32 percent blame congressional Democrats for the shutdown and 7 percent blame congressional Republicans, according to the poll. Those percentages are mostly unchanged from the previous poll.
Trump has promised to keep the government partially closed until Congress approves funding for an expanded barrier along the border.
Illegal border crossings into the United States have declined dramatically in recent years, yet Trump insists a wall is still necessary to stem a “humanitarian and national security crisis” in the region.
The president has asked Congress for nearly $6 billion for the wall and was expected to make his case directly to the public on Tuesday night in a nationally televised address.
Democratic leaders in Congress have refused to approve funding for additional border fencing, saying that it is an ineffective way to secure the border.
Public support for a border wall has shifted considerably over the past few years as it became a centerpiece of the Trump agenda. The poll found that 41 percent of the public supports building additional border fencing, down 12 points from a similar poll that ran in the first week of 2015, as opposition doubled among Democrats.
It also found that only 35 percent of adults in the United States support a congressional spending bill that includes funding for the wall, and 25 percent support Trump’s decision to keep the government closed until Congress approves funding for the wall.
Republicans, however, strongly support Trump’s pursuit of an expanded border wall. They have consistently ranked immigration as their top concern for the country. Seventy-seven percent of Republicans said in the most recent poll that they want additional border fencing, and 54 percent said they support Trump shutting down the government until Congress approves funding for the wall.
I dunno. 54% of Republicans supporting the shutdown of this stupid wall seems weak to me. After all, he said he would proudly shut down the government and took "the mantle" on national TV. There's some wobbliness on this one which xplains why he's making his speech tonight to try to shore up GOP congressional officials.
Note that Mitch is keeping his head inside his shell during this. He's not a mgaician but he knows a loser of an issue when he sees one...
Update: Oh ...
Eighteen days into the standoff over his $5.7 billion wall-fence-barrier, Donald Trump is rolling out his heaviest weapons: a prime-time Oval Office address tonight and a visit to the Mexican border later this week. It’s the president’s personal Alamo. Inside the West Wing, Trump has told aides he’s prepared to stake his presidency on making a last stand. “He has convinced himself he can’t win re-election in 2020 unless he gets a lot of the wall built. It’s fundamental to his id,” a former West Wing official said. “The problem is, the Democrats know that.”.
Trump’s aides fear he has given himself no way out. “The president put himself in a box,” the former official in touch with the White House told me. “The problem is there’s no endgame. Right now the White House is at a seven on the panic scale. If this thing goes on past the State of the Union they’re going to be at an 11.” Another prominent Republican close to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell described Trump’s handling of the shutdown as “total fucking chaos.”
Acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, installed in the job just before Christmas, may already be looking at escape routes. Unlike his long-suffering predecessor, John Kelly, Mulvaney has indicated he’s prepared to walk away if things go south with the president. “Mick has both eyes open,” said a person who spoke with Mulvaney recently. “So far, Trump has been more DIY than ever before. It’s a continuation of where things left off with Kelly. Mulvaney is not going to stick around and get ground up.” Before Christmas, Trump’s former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski told people that Mulvaney wouldn’t last long, according to a person who spoke with Lewandowski. Last night, The New York Times reported Mulvaney is interested in becoming president of the University of South Carolina.
Meanwhile, Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump have been underwhelmed with Mulvaney’s political skills, two people familiar with their thinking said. The sources said Jared and Ivanka have discussed recruiting Blackstone executive Wayne Berman to serve as White House strategist, but so far Berman hasn’t been interested a source familiar with his thinking said. Blackstone declined to comment.
The shutdown has pushed the Russia investigation out of the news cycle. But Trumpworld knows it hasn’t gone away. Rudy Giuliani recently told a friend that he expects Mueller’s report to be “horrific,” a person briefed on the conversation said (Giuliani did not respond to a request for comment). “You’re already hearing people speculate Trump could do a deal and resign.”
The White House did not respond to a request for comment.
digby 1/08/2019 05:30:00 PM