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The GOP’s Ludicrous Blame Game

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Friendly Reminder: When It Comes to a Potential Government Shutdown, the GOP Runs the White House, the Senate, and the House

After President Trump blew up bipartisan negotiations just days before a potential government shutdown, here are two central points to keep in mind as the brinkmanship and blame game unfolds in the coming days:

1. Last time we checked, Republicans control Washington. Republicans control both branches of Congress and the White House. They own the responsibility of keeping the government’s lights on. The Republicans’ internal divisions, their incompetence and their irresponsibility – best exemplified by the “Hell No” wing of the GOP Caucus’s refusal to vote for past spending bills – should not distract from this basic truth.

2. Democrats are standing up for Dreamers, and doing so is the right thing to do.The crisis facing Dreamers is already underway and only Congress can fix it. Democrats have been making a simple and straightforward case since Trump ended DACA in September: attach a bill protecting Dreamers to must-pass legislation, which, given Republican divisions, is the only way to fix the DACA crisis created by President Trump. Demands from Republicans that Democrats vote for a spending package without Dreamer relief obscures a central fact: voting for a spending package without Dreamer relief is a vote to deport Dreamers. Here’s why: spending bills fund enforcement; enforcement under Trump is being carried out with no regard to priorities; the claim that Republicans will enact standalone Dreamer relief through “regular order” is ludicrous, and a slow way of saying “never;” DACA recipients have and will continue to lose status and protections, exposing them to deportation. No member of Congress – Republican or Democrat – wants to go down in history as someone who voted for the deportation of Dreamers.

These are the facts. Republicans are responsible for keeping the federal government open, and if they refuse to include Dreamer relief, they will be on their own when it comes to putting together a majority out of their majority to keep the lights on.