Alan Webber: Nancy, Chuck and the wall
Did you see the news clip of Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi visiting the Oval Office to discuss funding with President Donald Trump for the wall across our southern border?
They had no idea Trump invited the media for a truly transparent meeting. Americans were going to be privy to the details of their discussion of whether to shut the government down again. We were going to see how the sausage was made.
You could tell by their body language Chuck and Nancy were uncomfortable with media attendance. It evidently is nearly impossible to play partisan politics when the world is looking in. They appeared as a couple of fish out of water. Schumer hardly could lift his head. This from the man who never saw a camera he didn’t want to stick his head in front of.
Unless you’re Donald Trump. He showed a spine and made a threat on national television. Making good on a campaign pledge (Hey, there’s an idea!), he stated he would shut the government down if they did not fund the wall. And then, he rightfully did.
President Trump clearly showed the buck does indeed stop with him, ala Harry Truman. Keep in mind, this month’s government shutdown is not America’s first rodeo with a shutdown, as we have survived past episodes of this political posturing at the expense of a few governmental employees. Bet we never would have a shutdown if the politicians were among those not getting paid.
Not having the intestinal fortitude to make charges to Trump’s face in the White House or the camera in her face, Pelosi and Schumer waited until they got away to twist everything and make snide remarks. They railed against Trump for having the audacity to shut down the government, as if they haven’t been involved in previous government shutdowns themselves.
Schumer stood on the Senate floor the next day and made it clear he had no intention of funding the wall, which he since has repeated. Note that in 2009, he stood on that same floor and bellowed exactly the opposite.
Schumer can make this charge because, as Senate minority leader, he controls the Democrats in the Senate. Sixty votes would be needed to pass the wall funding in the Senate, which would require the vote of 10 Democrats. Schumer won’t allow them to vote their conscious. They must vote party line or risk being shunned by Schumer. If a Democratic senator were to vote a way Schumer had not authorized, that senator might find his or her desk in the parking lot.
Absurdly, Democrats Joe Donnelly, of Indiana, and Joe Manchin, of West Virginia have been running ads in their respective states telling their constituents they would vote for the wall — a flat out lie.
In a 2009 speech to Georgetown Law, Schumer stated, “The American people are fundamentally pro-legal immigration and anti-illegal immigration. We will only pass comprehensive reform when we recognize this fundamental concept. ... First, illegal immigration is wrong. And a primary goal of comprehensive immigration reform must be to dramatically curtail future illegal immigration.”
You can find Schumer’s 2009 speech on YouTube. I researched for similar results on Nancy Pelosi and learned it’s difficult to decipher where Pelosi stands on any issue, as she flips and flops often ... in the same speech. Sometimes, she even speaks of skunk urine. After listening to her babbles, avoiding being mesmerized by her flailing hands, one comes away wondering what it is she just said. But she too flopped her opinion of illegal immigration sometime in the past five to six years.
So, one has to wonder, is the position of the Democratic party one of hatred toward Trump? Or perhaps someone figured out those illegal immigrants were future Democratic voters. We know it’s both ... and it’s puerile.
The language used against a sitting president of the U.S. is unethical and disrespectful. Had similar language been used against the former president, charges of racism would have been bellowed throughout the country. For the record, Mr. Trump does not take a salary for this abuse.
So now, the government is shut down officially, as the two sides play a game of chicken. “Non-essential government employees” (excuse the redundancy) have been sent home without pay, just as Christmas arrived. I could write a whole other column about “non-essential employees,” but you probably get the irony as well.
Stay tuned; the Democrats (and Republican Rhinos) take over the House in January and will continue with obstruction and useless talk of impeachment for the next two years, all at our expense.
By the way, during this shutdown, the “official Mueller Witch-Hunt” goes on ... with pay.