The government remains shut down. It’s now entered its 23rdday. Government workers are not getting paid, and nobody cares. This whole episode was brought on because Democrats don’t want to secure our borders. President Trump asked for just $5 billion for parts of his border wall. He reportedly offered to re-open the government if he received half of that in his meeting with Democrats earlier this week. They rejected it outright and had no counteroffer. Democrats just gained 40 seats in the House. They’re the majority and to all our horror, Nancy Pelosi is speaker again. They have zero incentive to play ball with the Trump White House. They were elected to stop him. Still, it doesn’t mean that they’re powerless, despite the GOP increasing their majority in the Senate. If they were able to be reasonable and not blinded by anti-Trump rage, the government could re-open. This was a point CNBC host Joe Kernen pointed out when speaking with House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD). The Democrats care more about sticking it to Trump than getting D.C. back up and running.
Walls work, folks. And voters are starting to see that. So, what does the Washington Post/ABC News poll say, well, of course, Trump is to blame (what else is new). But support for the wall has increased, especially with Republicans:
By a wide margin, more Americans blame President Trump and Republicans in Congress than congressional Democrats for the now record-breaking government shutdown, and most reject the president’s assertion that there is an illegal-immigration crisis on the southern border, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll.
Support for building a wall on the border, which is the principal sticking point in the stalemate between the president and Democrats, has increased over the past year. Today, 42 percent say they support a wall, up from 34 percent last January. A slight majority of Americans (54 percent) oppose the idea, down from 63 percent a year ago.
The increase in support is sharpest among Republicans, whose backing for Trump’s long-standing campaign promise jumped 16 points in the past year, from 71 percent to 87 percent. Not only has GOP support increased, it has also hardened. Today, 70 percent of Republicans say they strongly support the wall, an increase of 12 points since January 2018.
Now, I’m sure Trump doesn’t really care about the polling, and neither do his most die-hard supporters. The polls have been wrong. And they all more or less read the same: they don’t like Trump, but his policies aren’t universally rejected. It’s tough to parse a winning message from that, but the president cannot back down on the wall. It’s a key campaign promise. It’s been kicked down the road. Something has to get done on this front. The only thing that could raise an eyebrow in this White House is that the shutdown could cut into job growth in January by 500,000. Still, support for the wall is growing. Stay the course, Mr. President.