On Twitter, Trump wrote “I would be willing to ‘shut down’ government if the Democrats do not give us the votes for Border Security, which includes the Wall! Must get rid of Lottery, Catch & Release etc. and finally go to system of Immigration based on MERIT! We need great people coming into our Country.”
I would be willing to “shut down” government if the Democrats do not give us the votes for Border Security, which includes the Wall! Must get rid of Lottery, Catch & Release etc. and finally go to system of Immigration based on MERIT! We need great people coming into our Country!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 29, 2018
Earlier on Sunday morning, Trump tweeted, “Please understand, there are consequences when people cross our Border illegally, whether they have children or not—and many are just using children for their own sinister purposes. Congress must act on fixing the DUMBEST & WORST immigration laws anywhere in the world! Vote ‘R’”
The government has already been shut down once during Trump’s presidency. In January, the federal government ceased working for two days over DACA and a lack of funding for the border wall Trump has extolled since his presidential candidacy. Only a few weeks after that, Trump said he’d “love” to see another shutdown if the Democrats didn’t give in to his immigration demands.
In April, Trump also threatened a shutdown over the funding of border security.
Three months later, Trump has publicly returned to this line of thinking.
The Trump administration, though, has been under immense pressure for its policy of separating immigrant families at the border and then, in some cases, failing to reunite them—or to even have a clue for how to do so.
Trump’s declaration on Sunday might not sit well with some in Congress, especially Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Mitch McConnell on Friday when asked about a government shutdown:
"That's not going to happen."
Said border/homeland security $ fight could wait til after the election. https://t.co/fDa0Wzrfvn
— Steven Dennis (@StevenTDennis) July 29, 2018
Though the last government shutdown was short and ultimately didn’t do much damage to either political party, a shutdown only a few weeks before the November midterm elections could cause plenty of damage for whichever party the country blames.