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House and Senate adjourn with no end in sight for govt shutdown

CNN's Phil Mattingly reports.

Posted: Jan 13, 2019 9:08 AM
Updated: Jan 13, 2019 9:09 AM

The Democratic leaders struck on a great slogan when they started talking about the "Trump Shutdown" during the famous televised Oval Office meeting with President Trump last month. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer warned Trump that the blame for a government shutdown would fall on him, but the President happily accepted the responsibility and said, "I am proud to shut down the government for border security."

Both Pelosi and Schumer have since repeated the phrase "Trump Shutdown," but it's not actually the most accurate description of what's going on. This is really the Republican Shutdown, or maybe the Grand Old Party's Dysfunctional Moment, and it's vital that we be clear about what is going on.

Republicans could end this shutdown if they really wanted to do so. Before the last session of Congress ended, the Senate passed a bill to fund the government until early February, which did not include any funding for Trump's border wall. The bill was poised to pass in the House, and Senate Republicans, after having lunch with Vice President Mike Pence, said they were confident Trump would sign the spending bill. But Trump then said he would refuse to accept a stopgap measure that did not include funds for his wall, and while the House managed to pass a new bill that included the $5 billion in border wall funding, it was dead on arrival in the Senate.

If Senate Republicans decided to pass the original version of the bill before Trump intervened, it would likely pass in the House and place immense pressure on the President to end the longest government shutdown in US history. And should he veto the legislation, two-thirds of the House and Senate could override it. Republicans would have to show where they stand. Would they support the President and the ongoing shutdown or work with Democrats to reopen government?

When Democrats tried to bring forth a vote to reopen the government on Thursday, Sen. Mitch McConnell promptly shut them down. McConnell is stalling any progress and the main reason that President Trump can continue to hold the government hostage in order to force Democrats into accepting his demands on border wall funding is because Senate Republicans are letting him get away with it.

Shifting the narrative is crucial. Democrats are not having much luck changing the mind of a President who does not respond to ordinary political incentives and has no interest in governance. In many ways, negotiations with the legendary deal maker are a lost cause.

So the only real pressure point that can break the logjam without legitimizing this form of hostage-taking governance is McConnell. It is time for political organizations, red and blue, to mount a major campaign in the days ahead to build pressure on the GOP to pass a spending bill. It needs to be clear that if they don't, there will be a price to pay at the ballot box.

The news media also needs to move some of its coverage away from the Oval Office and back to Capitol Hill. Reporters need to make clear the power and responsibility of McConnell, the silent man in the room.

Democrats need to make clear to the public the power that congressional Republicans hold to bring this to an end. Three Republicans have already called for the government to reopen. Congress can then move forward to a debate about how to best improve border security. If President Trump can find the votes he needs for a wall, then his problem will be solved. That is how the legislative process works.

Until this happens, the nation is suffering through the Republican Shutdown, and once again the GOP shows that there is no daylight between the party and President Trump.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 113876

Reported Deaths: 3238
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds7850176
DeSoto685779
Harrison505083
Jackson445084
Rankin388186
Madison377993
Lee350779
Forrest299578
Jones287784
Washington255199
Lafayette245943
Lauderdale2418134
Lamar221238
Bolivar200177
Oktibbeha199354
Neshoba1831111
Lowndes176362
Panola169038
Leflore165187
Sunflower159749
Warren153655
Monroe147372
Pontotoc145819
Marshall139227
Lincoln138557
Pike137756
Copiah136236
Coahoma124736
Scott124729
Grenada121138
Yazoo120733
Simpson120449
Union116525
Tate114939
Leake114340
Holmes114160
Pearl River112259
Itawamba112125
Adams106743
Prentiss103719
Wayne99821
Alcorn98112
George97718
Covington95326
Marion93542
Tippah88121
Newton85227
Chickasaw83626
Tallahatchie83025
Winston82821
Tishomingo80041
Hancock79827
Attala78926
Clarke73450
Clay68321
Jasper67717
Walthall63627
Calhoun61912
Noxubee59617
Smith58916
Montgomery53523
Claiborne53316
Tunica52817
Yalobusha51914
Lawrence50714
Perry48623
Carroll47612
Greene46918
Stone46214
Humphreys42616
Amite42113
Quitman4196
Jefferson Davis40011
Webster37013
Wilkinson33520
Benton3255
Kemper32015
Sharkey28014
Jefferson27410
Franklin2373
Choctaw2046
Issaquena1074
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 155915

Reported Deaths: 2674
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson22861374
Mobile14468314
Tuscaloosa10148139
Montgomery9875196
Madison915094
Shelby720462
Lee649665
Baldwin647569
Marshall433049
Calhoun418960
Etowah418749
Morgan403635
Houston369232
DeKalb330229
Elmore314852
St. Clair287142
Limestone276530
Walker272293
Talladega261035
Cullman235724
Lauderdale214841
Jackson210015
Autauga202330
Franklin202131
Colbert196731
Russell19233
Blount189325
Dallas186227
Chilton184132
Escambia171929
Coffee171710
Covington169929
Dale165451
Chambers133643
Pike132313
Tallapoosa130587
Clarke130017
Marion106229
Butler100140
Barbour9979
Marengo99222
Winston91313
Geneva8527
Pickens82417
Lawrence82131
Randolph81216
Bibb81114
Hale74930
Clay72912
Cherokee72614
Lowndes70328
Monroe64010
Henry6396
Bullock63717
Washington63412
Crenshaw60230
Perry5836
Wilcox56212
Fayette56113
Conecuh55713
Cleburne5438
Macon52920
Sumter47021
Lamar4665
Choctaw38812
Greene34216
Coosa2023
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