Government Shutdown Starts Today: Popcorn Rating, Zero
A government shutdown starts today. The final tally on a stopgap budget motion at 1:30 AM this morning was 50-49 against. 60 votes were needed to end the debate
Five Republican Senators, Jeff Flake, AZ; Lindsey Graham, SC; Mike Lee, UT; and Rand Paul, KY, joined 44 Democrats voting no. Five Democrats voted in favor of the budget.
Meaningless Political Sideshow
Nothing will come of this even though ABC News proclaims GOP, Dems Show No Sign of Retreat in Shutdown's First Day.
Right around midnight, Senate Democrats killed a GOP-written House-passed measure that would have kept agencies functioning for four weeks. Democrats were seeking a stop-gap bill of just a few days in hopes that would build pressure on Republicans, and were opposing a three-week alternative offered by GOP leaders.
Democrats have insisted they would back legislation reopening government once there's a bipartisan agreement to preserve protections against deporting about 700,000 immigrants who arrived in the U.S. illegally as children. Each party believes it had a winning political hand, and the day's first words by party leaders underscored that so far, neither side believe it was time to give ground.
"The American people cannot begin to understand why the Senate Democratic leader thinks the entire government should be shut down until he gets his way on illegal immigration," said McConnell
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said voters will fault Trump and the GOP. He blamed Trump for reneging on a near-deal that Schumer said the two men had approached during a White House meeting Friday.
"Negotiating with President Trump is like negotiating with Jello," Schumer said.
The last shutdown came in 2013. Tea party Republicans, in a strategy not unlike the one Schumer is employing now, sought to use a must-pass budget bill to try to force President Barack Obama to delay implementation of his health care law. At the time, Trump told "Fox & Friends" that the ultimate blame for a shutdown lies at the top. "I really think the pressure is on the president," he said.
Recall that in 2013, Republicans said the deficit was too high. The deficit is not too high today even though tax cuts added another $1.5 trillion to the spending problem.
The biggest impact in 2013 was a shutdown of the national park system. Imagine taking a vacation to see a park and having the park shut down.
Yesterday, the Trump Administration stated It’ll Run Shutdown Differently, Keep Parks Open.
"We are going to manage the shutdown differently," White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said in a briefing with reporters Friday. "We are not going to weaponize it. We’re not going to try and hurt people."
The Obama administration took a different approach in 2013, eschewing opportunities to make the shutdown "much less impactful," and instead opting "to make it worse," Mulvaney said. Any shutdown under President Donald Trump would "look very different," he said.
Popcorn Rating Zero
I snapped the popcorn image on my phone moments ago.
Don't bother popping corn while waiting for fireworks. There won't be any fireworks. Some agreement will come, likely sooner than later, but long before anything significant happens.
Any bond selloff over this shutdown is unwarranted.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock