Donald Trump has himself to blame for the impasse the U.S. government finds itself currently in. This is not something which is being argued by critics of the president, but a statement opined by Trump himself.
According to the Huffington Post, Trump told Fox News in 2013 that the responsibility for a government shutdown should fall squarely on the shoulders of the U.S. President. At the time, he blamed Obama for the government shutdown which took place because of funding conflicts. Appearing on Fox and Friends, Trump was asked who should get “fired” for the shutdown. The hosts were making a reference to the Apprentice, a reality TV show where Trump would “fire” contestants as a judge, and Trump replied that the responsibility goes to the very top.
“Who’s getting fired? Who’s going to bear the brunt of the responsibility if indeed there is a government shutdown?” asked host Elisabeth Hasselbeck at the time. “If you say who gets fired it always has to be the top,” Trump said.
“Problems start from the top and they have to get solved from the top. And the president’s the leader. He’s got to get everyone in a room and he’s gotta lead. But he doesn’t do that,” he added, referring to Obama.
“And that’s why you have this horrible situation going on in Washington. It’s a very, very bad thing and it’s very embarrassing worldwide.”
The U.S. government is facing at least a partial shutdown through the Christmas period because of a breakdown in talks between Democrats and Republicans over the funding of Trump’s border wall. Trump has indicated that he wants the government to spend $5 billion on the wall but Democrats have refused to budge over such a high figure. Democratic leaders blamed Trump’s “temper tantrums” for the impasse and pointed out that only last week Trump had claimed that he would be proud to enforce a shutdown, according to the Guardian.
Trump’s campaign promise of building a wall is likely to make him uncompromising and failure to keep his campaign promise could lead to a serious fallout among his supporters, but Democratic leaders are set to fight him over the spending.
“If you want to open the government, you must abandon the wall,” Minority leader Chuck Schumer told Republican Majority leader Mitch McConnell.
There is no end in sight for the government shutdown — which will see hundreds of thousands of federal workers either be forced to take unpaid time off or be forced to work without pay — at least through Christmas.