Congressmen Waver While Trump And Pelosi Refuse To Compromise On Shutdown

It’s Day 21 of the government shutdown and there is no end in sight. As of today, the shutdown is tied with the 1995-96 shutdown as the longest in history. The leadership of both parties is resolute. Both President Trump and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi have dug in and refused to compromise from their respective positions. Not everyone is happy among the party rank and file, however.

In the most recent House votes on compromise bills to reopen the government, 12 Republicans joined with House Democrats in voting to fully fund the Departments of Transportation and Housing and Urban Development (HR 267). Previously, 10 Republicans had voted to fund parts of the government. In Thursday’s vote, they were joined by Rep. Steve Stivers (R-OH), the most recent chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, and Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL). Stivers and Davis did not join the 10 other Republicans in a separate vote to reopen the Department of Agriculture (HR 265).

The number of disaffected Republicans is growing. On Wednesday’s votes, Reps. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) and Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA) joined with another eight Republicans who had earlier voted to fund the government. The eight who have consistently voted in favor of funding are Reps. Will Hurd (R-TX), Greg Walden (R-OR), Fred Upton (R-MI), Elise Stefanik (R-NY), John Katko (R-NY) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA). Greg Walden was the chairman of the RCCC from 2014 through 2016.

Although both bills passed the House, they will die in the Senate where Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refuses to take any action on a bill that Trump would not sign. President Trump has refused to waver on his demand for $5 billion for his wall project, about one-fifth of the estimated total that would be required, and Democrats have offered only $1.3 billion for border security funding that excludes the wall. Pelosi joked with reporters that she would only appropriate one dollar for the wall, adding, “We’re not doing a wall. Does anybody have any doubt about that?”

Despite Pelosi’s show of resolve, some Democrats are wavering as well. Politico reported on Wednesday that some freshman House Democrats were “freaking out” about the shutdown and the party’s strategy. A senior Democratic aide blamed some of the anxiety on the fact that some new congressmen didn’t have their offices and emails set up and were not receiving communications from Speaker Pelosi.

Nevertheless, some are feeling the heat from constituents. “If I am getting comments and contact from my constituents expressing concern that the Democrats are not prioritizing security, then I think we can do better,” said Rep. Abigail Spanberger (D-Va.).

Even if some Democrats have misgivings, so far, they have not had the opportunity to break ranks with their party. The only funding bills active are the partial funding bills passed by the House that reopen individual departments of the federal government. The dynamics of the shutdown are that funding bills originate in the Democrat-controlled House. Since McConnell is quashing votes in the Senate, that means that Republicans have more chances to cross the aisle than Democrats.

If McConnell decides to allow the House funding bills to be considered in the Senate, it is highly likely that they would pass easily. The bigger question is whether the Senate would have enough votes to override a probable veto from the president.

As the shutdown stretches on, the effects are starting to pile up like trash in the unstaffed national parks. Federal workers are missing a payday today. That has rippling effects throughout the country as local federal employees may be unable to pay their bills and about $2.2 billion in consumer spending is withheld from the economy. Even the Coast Guard and air traffic controllers are affected. Some services, such as the ability to obtain passports from the State Department are already closed and, if the shutdown stretches on others, such as tax refunds, may be delayed.

The shutdown will continue until one side blinks. So far, neither President Trump nor Speaker Pelosi has given any indication of budging from their positions. The compromise to end the shutdown will have to come from members of Congress who feel the pressure from their constituents. Pelosi’s San Francisco seat is safe, but many other congressmen and senators represent swing districts and states. They will be ready to make a deal and, because Republicans are more vulnerable after the last midterms, the odds are that it will not include a wall.

At this point, Mitch McConnell is the key. If McConnell stays strong and protects the president then the shutdown could last indefinitely. However, polling already shows that voters blame Trump for the shutdown and oppose both the shutdown tactic and the wall. If and when McConnell determines that Trump’s shutdown is endangering the Republican majority in the Senate, he could easily allow a vote and put Trump in the position of having to veto funding without a wall or backing down.

Why Democrats Won’t Impeach Donald Trump

As the 116th Congress begins, the question on the minds of many political observers is, “Will they or won’t they?” Democrats will control the House of Representatives, the congressional body that is responsible for impeaching elected officials, so will they impeach Donald Trump?

The answer is a definite maybe.

On NBC’s Today Show this morning, incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that impeachment would be very “divisive” for the country. She added, “We shouldn’t be impeaching for a political reason, and we shouldn’t avoid impeachment for a political reason.”

Some Democrats are anxious to begin impeachment proceedings. Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) is already planning to introduce articles of impeachment based on the allegation that Trump obstructed justice by firing FBI Director James Comey. Sherman originally introduced the articles in 2017 but they went nowhere in the Republican-controlled House.

But just because the legislation is being introduced does not mean that it has the support of House Democrats or their leadership. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) introduced articles of impeachment against George W. Bush in 2008 but the effort went nowhere. Nancy Pelosi was speaker then as well.

Whatever you might think of Nancy Pelosi, one thing is certain: She is politically shrewd. Pelosi undoubtedly realizes that as long as Senate Republicans remain united, there would be no point in impeaching President Trump.

The House could pass the articles of impeachment but to what end? The second phase of impeachment is a Senate trial to determine whether the president would be removed from office. With Republicans in control of the Senate, it is a certainty that this effort would fail.

Pelosi is more likely to bide her time and wait. If the Mueller investigation uncovers evidence of more wrongdoing by Trump, then it is possible that she will consider pursuing impeachment in the future. This is particularly true if the revelations about Trump’s actions cause a split in the GOP that enables her to pick up enough Republican votes to remove Trump from office.

Looking back to the impeachment of Bill Clinton, this was the error that Republicans made. House Republicans impeached the president but he was acquitted in the Senate even though Republicans held a majority in that body as well. A number of Republican senators voted “not guilty” and Clinton was allowed to remain in office. President Clinton’s popularity reached its highest points during and after his impeachment.

Bill Clinton was in his second term in 1998 and could not run for re-election. If Donald Trump is impeached in 2019, however, the Democrats run the risk that he will become more popular. A failed impeachment might give Trump the edge he needs to win re-election.

Napoleon is said to have advised, “Never interfere with your enemy when he is making a mistake.” Speaker Pelosi is likely to take this advice to heart.

While impeaching Trump would be emotionally satisfying for many on the left, Pelosi will play the long game. Her focus will not be on a feel-good impeachment, it will be on winning the Senate and the White House in 2020. This year’s midterm elections showed that the best chance for Democrats in 2020 is to keep Trump in office. His divisive temperament and unpopular policies led Republicans to a suburban rout in 2018 and more of the same is likely in 2020.

On the other hand, a successful impeachment of President Trump would result in Mike Pence becoming president. Pence is a much more experienced and competent politician who would stand a better chance of being re-elected than Donald Trump. Pence would also benefit from a united Republican Party that would rally avenge the ouster of President Trump.

A lot can happen in two years but at this point, it seems that Pelosi’s best strategy would be to keep impeachment on the back burner. If the opportunity to oust Trump presents itself, she will be prepared to jump on it, but her best bet would be to sit back and allow Trump to defeat himself and fracture the GOP in the process.

Nancy Pelosi Says Deal Linking Wall And DACA Will Be DOA

Once-and-future Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has fired a shot across the bow of the Trump Administration on immigration. The California Democrat, popularly known as “San Fran Nan,” is preemptively signaling that Democrats won’t sign onto a deal that ties President Trump’s wall funding to a permanent fix for the DACA program.

In comments to reporters on Thursday as the House and Senate approved an extension of spending that will fund the government until Dec. 21, Pelosi rejected the idea of a compromise that would link the president’s wall project to making Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program permanent.

“They’re two different subjects,” Pelosi told the Associated Press.

It is extremely doubtful that House Democrats could be persuaded to fund the wall as part of a standalone bill. Pelosi added that many Democrats consider the wall to be “immoral, ineffective and expensive.” Even if Mexico paid for the wall as Donald Trump promised in the election, she said, “It’s immoral still.” So far, Mexico has shown no sign of being willing to fund the wall either.

Earlier this year, Democrats refused to budge on similar proposals to legalize DACA participants. A Trump Administration proposal from January would have represented a major victory for Democrats in exchange for a $25 billion commitment to the wall. That deal was scuttled by Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senate Democrats. Afterward, President Trump said that there would be “NO MORE DACA DEAL.”

In reality, neither side wants a comprehensive immigration deal. Republicans have long opposed comprehensive immigration reform, preferring instead to insist that border security must come first. For more than a decade, any Republican who has supported a comprehensive fix for the immigration system has been accused of supporting “amnesty” and “open borders” and is reviled by the Republican base. A significant number of Republicans opposed President Trump’s DACA deal because they thought it would benefit Democrats.

For their part, Democrats seem to prefer that the issue be kept open to provide them with a wedge that makes Republicans appear bigoted and xenophobic. As the two parties battle over the Hispanic demographic, Democrats cannot afford to let a Republican president claim credit for fixing the popular DACA program. Likewise, giving President Trump a victory on the wall, his signature issue, would boost Trump’s reelection chances and energize his base. Democrats cannot allow that.

Ironically both parties risk alienating voters with their hardline positions on immigration. Exit polls from 2018 showed that minorities are fleeing the Republican Party, but the downside may be even greater for Democrats. There were pro-DACA protests against the Democratic Party in March after the implosion of the DACA deal. If pro-immigration voters decide that Democrats are stringing them along, they may give Republicans a try.

The reality is that neither side has the numbers to enact its own unilateral immigration bill. That will be especially true when Democrats take control of the House next year, but even over the past two years, minority Democrats in the Senate were able to kill Republican bills with the filibuster.

Until the two sides decide to work together (or until one side controls both houses of Congress and the presidency and eliminates the filibuster), there will be no fix for our broken immigration system. Until that day, the border will stay open and illegal immigrants will remain in legal limbo.

O’Care: Teddy, Scott and the Blue Dog Democrats

This past Friday, true to his campaign promise, President Trump’s administration removed a key Obamacare birth control requirement. 

The Trump administration on Friday rolled back an ObamaCare requirement that employers include birth control coverage in their health insurance plans. Under highly anticipated rules published Friday, any for-profit or non-profit employer or insurer can stop following the birth control mandate on moral and religious grounds. The changes also let publicly traded companies obtain a religious exemption but not a moral one. The rules take effect immediately. The changes follow an executive order President Trump signed in April that instructed the Department of Health and Human Services to address “conscience-based objections” to the mandate, which has faced strong opposition from religious schools, charitable organizations and priests and nuns. The decision is a big win for social conservatives, a voting bloc that strongly supported Trump in the presidential election.

Within hours, liberal organizations were announcing plans to file lawsuits with the intent of obtaining an injunction barring the government from removing the birth control mandate.

The action has already drawn lawsuits. Both the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Women’s Law Center said Friday  they would challenge Trump administration’s changes in court. “Today’s outrageous rules by the Trump Administration show callous disregard for women’s rights, health, and autonomy. By taking away women’s access to no-cost birth control coverage, the rules give employers a license to discriminate against women,” said Fatima Goss Graves, president and CEO of the NWLC. “This will leave countless women without the critical birth control coverage they need to protect their health and economic security. We will take immediate legal steps to block these unfair and discriminatory rules.”

The game plan for challenging the administration’s removal of the birth control mandate is highly flawed and specious. This leaves liberals and the MSM with little choice but to attempt to control the narrative through deception and historic revisionism. This is the backstory they don’t want you know, and hope the courts won’t consider.

Along with President Obama being elected in 2008, the country also chose to give the Democrats a majority in the House of Representatives, and a 60 seat super-majority in the Senate.  The super-majority in the Senate meant the president could virtually get any legislation he wanted passed. He wanted healthcare legislation, and in the spring of 2009, both the House and Senate began work in various committees with the goal of producing a comprehensive healthcare bill.

But, along the way they hit a major roadblock. On August 25, 2009, Sen. Ted Kennedy D-MA died of brain cancer. By that time the Tea Party movement had gathered steam and had become a major voice opposing any national healthcare legislation. In January 2010, a Republican, Scott Brown won the Massachusetts special election to replace the late Sen. Kennedy.

The Senate no longer had a Democratic super-majority, putting healthcare legislation at very real risk of failure. Senate Republicans were in lockstep vowing to filibuster any healthcare legislation, and this forced the Democrats to find another avenue for passage of one of President Obama’s major campaign promises.

Enter Budget Reconciliation. This seemed to be an ideal path for Democrat success because any bill coming from the House of Representatives to the Senate through this method required only a simple majority for passage. But this path also had potholes, and those were very real threats to the party leadership.

While the Democratic Senate leadership was working to solve several objections from various Democrat senators, Rep. Bart Stupak D-MI was leading a small pro-life Democratic caucus, and their demands were centered around eliminating all federal funding for abortion, abortion counseling, and any birth control mandate. Coupled with the Republican members of the House, this small group had the leverage to kill the bill.

In order to bring these Blue Dog Democrats back into the fold, the President and Nancy Pelosi agreed to their stipulations. It was only after the bill passed, that these pro-life Democrats realized party leadership had lied to them, and had crafted a bill which  allowed the Secretary of Health and Human Services the latitude to implement a birth control mandate within Obamacare.

Back to the present. An Executive Branch mandate isn’t law, rather it’s part of the Executive Order category. Rolling it back requires nothing more than another Executive Order, which happens routinely when the next president takes office.

The MSM, liberals and the Democratic Party Leadership will begin their campaign of deceit making various claims, none of which are actually based on legal grounds. They are following a staged script, one which no doubt will end up at the Supreme Court.

First, some liberal organization will find a liberal federal judge sympathetic to their cause, and will file suit for an injunction seeking to preserve this mandate. The Executive Branch will appeal, and one way or another this will end up in the Supreme Court.

It is highly doubtful this will end up in success for Democrats. The Supreme Court gives far too much weight to the Chevron Doctrine.

In its 1984 decision, the Supreme Court said that when Congress passed a law that did not have a clear meaning, courts should defer to the federal agency applying the law unless its interpretation was unreasonable. The court reasoned that experts at agencies had been trusted by Congress to make informed decisions. This has become the doctrine. In the decades since, courts have commonly deferred to agencies not just on the environment but in areas touched by laws such as the Federal Communications Act and the Occupational Safety and Health Act.

While this will be red meat for the far left, this is just another issue which will push mainstream Americans away from their party.  Once again, the fringe is controlling the party, giving Republicans a very real Nancy Pelosi issue to run against.

The bottom line is they mishandled the entire legislative process in passing Obamacare, and now that incompetence is coming back at them with a vengeance.

For Dreamers – DACA is a Pipe Dream

Much has been written about President Trump revoking the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Order put into action by the Obama administration.

An equal amount, or more, has been written about the meeting in the Oval Office with Sen. Chuck Schumer and Rep. Nancy Pelosi. After conflicting reports of what was agreed upon during the conversation, and after a few days have past, it appears the President agreed to only continue conversations.

A careful study of the stakeholders involved seems to show any sort of DACA-Dreamers success to be remote at best. There appear to be simply too many obstacles for compromise to take place.

Left alone, President Trump, and both the Democrat and Republican leadership could probably come to a deal. While there are differences those are manageable.

Rep. Pelosi and Sen. Schumer would like to see immediate amnesty for the Dreamers, but would settle for a path to citizenship. They are content to leave out the vast majority of illegal aliens in this DACA bill. They are happy to throw money at “border security” as long as specific funding for the border wall isn’t included.

Sen. Mitch McConnell and Rep. Paul Ryan would ideally like an overall more comprehensive immigration bill, but will settle for Dreamers. They can’t agree to immediate amnesty, but are more than willing to work on language about a path to permanent status if not citizenship. Given the fact they don’t want to fund the border wall either, they are more than happy to fund increased undefined “border security” and call that a victory.

The President first and foremost wants this off his desk, with something that can be considered a win. He’s seems fairly flexible, but is quite cognizant that his base will be watching this very closely. If Sen. McConnell and Rep. Ryan give him cover on a bill, and if that bill doesn’t have immediate amnesty, he’ll undoubtably sign it. He has already indicated border wall funding doesn’t have to be in the bill.

But…there are three other stakeholders in this quagmire, and it is those three who will ultimately doom passage.

Progressive socialist Democrats do not want Democratic Party leadership negotiating with the President at all. From their perspective, “no” isn’t good enough, “hell no” might not be either. (Townhall)

Despite reports indicating President Trump’s positions on amnesty and DACA are shifting to the left, many in the progressive movement recoil that any discussions are occurring at all. Campaign Director Justin Krebs at the far-left group MoveOn.org maintains that “nothing Trump has done should change the fact that he’s pursuing a toxic agenda” and that “Democratic leaders should not forget that.” Murshed Zaheed, of CREDO  Action, went further claiming that the California and New York representatives were often “out of touch with the zeitgeist of the progressive movement.” Democratic Rep. Gerry Connolly of Virginia cautioned Democrats dealing with Trump. “Let’s not fool ourselves, he is this person we know, and I just think there must be both political and moral limitations with how far we’re willing to cooperate with that.”

But, that’s not their only reason, and it is this reason around which their 2018 campaign theme revolves. (Townhall)

Progressives are furious at  Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. In the far left’s minds, the two are “normalizing” President Trump as they continue to negotiate immigration with the Republican president.

Think about that for a moment, having learned nothing from Hillary Clinton, the entire Democratic campaign theme is “We’re not him!!”. Which is why they can’t abide leadership allowing the Oval Office to claim victory for any deal, no matter how weak the claim.

The California liberal combined with the various hispanic organizations and hispanic Democrats are adamant that they will not sit still for any half-measures. They don’t want a stand-alone DACA bill at all. Rather, they are insistent having a place at the table, with their demands being given priority.  (Politico)

Democratic leaders are facing fresh trouble with their left flank after cutting their latest deal with President Donald Trump to protect Dreamers. Hispanic lawmakers were blindsided by the Wednesday night announcement from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) that they’d support legislation to help the nearly 700,000 undocumented immigrants in exchange for an unspecified boost in border security. And immigration activists were frustrated to see Democrats claim victory only days after calling for a stand-alone vote on a path to citizenship for Dreamers. The concerns are particularly acute in the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, where some members worry Democratic leaders — despite getting Trump to drop demands for a border wall in the talks — have already given away too much in the nascent negotiations and say their members are being shut out of key talks.

What do they want? First of all a clean bill without border security (Politico)

“This is bulls**t,” said Rep. Filemon Vela (D-Texas). “If what we’re going to do is address DACA, we ought to do that on its own and we ought to address border security on its own.” Some members want to draw up a list of 10 or so border security provisions the caucus won’t accept as part of any bipartisan deal.

For these open border devotees, only a guaranteed path to citizenship will suffice. (Politico)

Immigration groups want to see more than just a fix for the nearly 700,000 individuals affected by DACA; they want a path to citizenship for more than 1 million that would be provided under the DREAM Act.

Some of these activist are so energized, they disrupted an event last night where Rep. Nancy Pelosi was speaking (Wash Post)

Protesters angrily confronted House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Monday — and she tried in vain to quiet them — about her emerging agreement with President Trump to provide legal protections to young undocumented immigrants. The protesters demanded “a clean bill” — meaning that the Dream Act would get an up-or-down vote on its own without any language regarding border security attached. They “demanded” that Pelosi show a commitment to protecting “all 11 million” undocumented immigrants believed to be in the country. “We are not a bargaining chip!” the protesters chanted, according to local reporters. “All of us or none of us,”

These enraged protestors have evidently turned on Democratic leadership, and consider them to be part of the problem (Wash Post)

“We demand accountability. Democrats are not the resistance of Trump. We are!” they shouted.

Then there are the conservative border security hawks who consider President Trump’s campaign promise to build a border wall and to stridently enforce illegal immigration to be sacrosanct. (Townhall)

For President Trump’s part, his own base is just as angry. Many are claiming the president is betraying his promises. Many Trump voters are worried that border wall, the cornerstone of his campaign, will not happen. “The base will leave him. They can’t support him anymore,” said Rep. Steven King if a wall is not completed.

In particular Rep. Steve King and Ann Coulter was loudly vocal about their displeasure with President Trump negotiating with the Democrats. (Townhall)

“The base will leave him. They can’t support him anymore. I am talking about my constituents in Iowa that will say you need to be behind trump. I am. I support his entire agenda. I support the agenda Trump had when he went into office and I support almost every piece of the agenda, except the amnesty piece being dangled, and that’s so destructive to a first world country,” Rep. Steve King, an early supporter of Trump on the campaign trail, said during an interview with CNN Thursday morning. “If you do not have the rule of law or respect for that law, the people writing the immigration laws are the people breaking them. We had a protest here, DREAMers coming up demanding we give them amnesty. What right do law breakers have to make demands from the citizens of the United States of America. If anything, they should be pleading for it and not demanding.” “This was a straight up promise throughout his campaign,” King continued. “It looks to me like he’s preparing to keep Hillary Clinton’s campaign promise rather than his own.”

Ann Coulter was even more harsh with her condemnation, tweeting: (Townhall)

“At this point who DOESN”T want Trump impeached?”, and “If we’re not getting a wall, I’d prefer President Pence.”

These border security hawks will be very upset if a DACA deal includes any path to citizenship. They consider that de facto amnesty. They also do not want legislation without funding for a border wall. These conservatives have been burned far too often by “future funding” promises by the Democrats, and are going to insist on border funding first. Also, any discussion about “chain migration” is not on the table. Lastly, they will not ever allow those to morph into a general amnesty bill. That would be a craven Rubio-esque betrayal in their mind.

So, there you have it. The problem for those who would be willing to compromise in order to make a deal happen is they do not have the numbers to get the deal done. Conservatives in the House would revolt if Paul Ryan brought up a general amnesty deal, or agreed to DACA legislation without border security and wall funding.

Likewise on the left, there are far too many liberals who don’t want to see any deal with the White House, who along with the open borders advocates make up a sizable voting bloc opposing Schumer and Pelosi.

It’s hard to see how DACA moves forward, whether its this year, or first quarter 2018. There are too many players with disparate views, and while there might be other obstacles, these alone appear to make Dreamer legislation a pipe dream.

 

Nancy Pelosi’s Nightmare With Dreamers

The signs have all been there. The problems created by the Democrats propensity for behaving like bad a parent who whispers “You know you’re really my favorite” in the ear of each one of their children are coming home to roost. For years, the Progressive Left has been carving the population into subsets based on specific identity characteristics and trying to serve the very specific needs of these groups no matter how small they are or how outlandish their demands.

Their most recent problems started during the 2016 primary at Netroots Nation when Martin O’Malley and Bernie Sanders were shouted down by Black Lives Matter during stump speeches. The latest victim of this problematic parenting style? House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and it is delicious in it’s irony.

During a press conference that was supposed to demonstrate the Minority Leader’s unwavering commitment to participants in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in her home district in San Francisco, about 40 protesters marched into the room and began chanting demands. Among them is advocating for DACA participants (I refuse to use the phrase Dreamers as it is just another term used to evoke sympathy by the Progressive Left in order to make you care) is not enough.

According to these activists and their chant, Pelosi must be an advocate for the “11 Million” who are in this country illegally. Further, they accuse Democrats of creating a “deportation machine” that removed 3 million illegal immigrants from the United States under Barack Obama. With this disruption The Minority Leader’s PR moment was ruined and to many on the Far Left her actions were exposed as falling far short of what is required on behalf of the illegal immigrant community.

You can watch the entire debacle here if chaos is your thing, but below is a giggle worthy slice as Pelosi and her staff try to regain control of the event. Hearing her scolding defense as she is shouted down is just fabulous.

Following the abrupt end to the event, Nancy Pelosi’s bewilderment is palpable. She calls the protesters attacks on Democrats “ridiculous” and attempts to defend her personal record from their attacks. Somehow I do not think her comments will do much to appease her critics on this issue. Nor as the leader of the party, will her comments about having policies full of illegals and her desire to fix their problems play well with the working and middle class voters the Democrats walked away from between 2008 and 2016.

I can only hope more events like this take place and the demands from the Progressive Left become more outrageous. Democratic Leaders like Nancy Pelosi and others fail to understand they can no longer control the narrative as they prefer. Having gone so far down the path of catering to ever smaller identity subsets, it may be too late for a course correction. A quick bit of math tells me the the House Minority Leader just suffered a public relations nightmare attempting to be an advocate for approximately 0.0025% of the people residing in the United States.

To those watching in the Center, who may look at the of DACA participants and feel sympathy for their plight, what was also made clear is the children are revolting. No solution goes far enough. Addressing the plight of those in DACA is just the tip of the iceberg. Now there are cries for 11 million new citizens. Next it will be entry for their extended family. As the Democrats look to please all of the people all of the time it is imperative our message revolve around why these are really awful ideas for a huge swath of Americans already afraid of losing good paying jobs to technology and continuing to deal with lagging wage increases.

Should people feel sympathy for those in DACA? Absolutely. Should we feel responsible for their plight or compelled to offer solutions that harm people who are citizens or entered country legally? Absolutely not as that falls squarely on their parents. And no solution to this problem should include provisions that encourage more parents to toss their kids over the border by whatever means possible with the hope of eventual amnesty. It’s time for Democrats to pick their favorite child and one has to question the calculus they will use to make that determination.

 

Trump Sees DACA Deal As Win-Win

Chaos broke out last night after a dinner between President Trump and Democrat congressional leaders Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Nancy Pelosi (D- Calif.). In the wake of Trump’s deal with Democrats on the debt ceiling, there were late-breaking reports that the three had reached an agreement to extend President Obama’s DACA program.

Fast forward a few hours to this morning and President Trump is denying almost everything. In a tweet, the president said, “No deal was made last night on DACA. Massive border security would have to be agreed to in exchange for consent. Would be subject to vote.”

The president continued, “The WALL, which is already under construction in the form of new renovation of old and existing fences and walls, will continue to be built.”

Then, in a third tweet, President Trump changes tacks. “Does anybody really want to throw out good, educated and accomplished young people who have jobs, some serving in the military?” he asks. “Really!” He continued in that vein in a fourth tweet, “They have been in our country for many years through no fault of their own – brought in by parents at young age. Plus BIG border security.”

Taken together, the tweets indicate that President Trump may not have a final agreement on an extension of DACA, but he wants one. Even though Trump ran his campaign as a hardliner on immigration, he gave several indications that he was not firmly committed to the issue.

In August 2016, three months before the election, there were reports that Trump was flip-flopping on immigration. He denied the charge, telling Fox News at the time, “We want to come up with a fair but firm process. Fair but firm.”

In December 2016, the president-elect directly addressed the “Dreamers” in his “Person of the Year” interview with Time magazine. “We’re going to work something out that’s going to make people happy and proud,” he said. “They got brought here at a very young age, they’ve worked here, they’ve gone to school here. Some were good students. Some have wonderful jobs. And they’re in never-never land because they don’t know what’s going to happen.”

The signs were there all along that President Trump would cut a deal. And there are benefits for the president if he does. Its unpopularity among Republicans notwithstanding, most Americans like DACA and don’t want to deport the Dreamers. For many people, how President Obama created the DACA program, usurping congressional legislative authority, is more of a problem that the program itself. And let’s be honest, many people don’t even care if Obama exceeded his executive authority to create the program. Recent polling shows that most Americans approve of DACA by double-digit margins. Even a third to a half of Republicans support continuing the program.

Not just any illegal immigrant is eligible for DACA. Candidates must have come to the country illegally or overstayed a visa when they were younger than 16 and have continuously resided in the United States since 2007. The must be in school, have a GED or high school diploma or have been honorably discharged from the US military. A felony or more than three misdemeanors is not allowed. Participants also had to pay $980 in initial fees and $465 for renewals, all for a program that did not give official legal status. Whatever DACA was, it was not amnesty. The prospect of prosecution and deportation was still there.

Most voters also approve of President Trump’s first deal with the Democrats. Rasmussen found that two-thirds of voters think it’s good for the country if Trump and the Democrats work together.

President Trump likely sees a DACA deal as a win-win. He can become more popular by reaching across the aisle to enact a policy that he likes anyway. From a pragmatic perspective, the Republicans have been unable to get anything done, so a pivot to the left makes sense.

Could Republicans block collaboration between Trump and the Democrats? Assuming the Democrats all vote together, in the Senate, a deal would need 13 Republican votes for cloture and three votes for passage. In the House, 23 Republican votes would be needed for a simple majority. Between Republican moderates who support DACA and Trump supporters who will follow the president’s lead, a Trump-Democrat deal would be hard to stop.

The problem with a nonideological president is that his principles and platform are not firmly grounded. If he wants to accomplish things – anything – and be popular, he won’t necessarily continue to dance with the voters who brought him to the Washington.

And what of the Trump base that voted for the Wall and deportation?

“I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters,” Trump famously said of his base during the campaign.

His pivot on DACA may be about to put that theory to the test.

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Deal or No Deal? Trump Bucks Reports of Immigration Compromise with Democrats

After Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer rushed out of a dinner with the president to announce that they had made a deal with him on immigration, Donald Trump took to Twitter – naturally – to, um, clarify that no deal had taken place.

He reiterated that the border wall he has spent so much time talking about is a non-negotiable when it comes to immigration and border security legislation.

This statement is sure to please his most ardent supporters, many of whom got behind him because of his insistence on a border wall.

But, mere minutes later, Trump indicated that some sort of DACA-type legislation is important to him.

It will be interesting to see what the Trump Train crowd will do with the messages the president seems to be sending. It should also be fun to watch the Democrats backtrack on this one too.

No matter what happens – or doesn’t happen – on immigration, leave it to Donald Trump to always keep us guessing.

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