While it might only be an agreement that funds the government for three weeks and Trump has already threatened another shutdown if he doesn’t get his way on funding for a wall, it looks like the longest federal shutdown in history will be coming to an end. Gerry Connolly was quick to remind people that Trump was using federal workers as political pawns and the shutdown should have never happened.
“It is incomprehensible that it took President Trump 35 days to finally realize his Shutdown is so harmful to the American people,” Connolly said. “While I am pleased he has agreed to reopen government and get federal employees and contractors back to work, it is still unconscionable that he would hold them hostage in the first place. He must never do this again.”
Back on January 4th, Trump had held a press conference in which he said he wouldn’t sign legislation that simply kept the government open for a short period of time — even if it was clear that extension was being used to negotiate regarding the situation on the southern border. Now, after workers have been furloughed for 35 days and his cabinet members claim they don’t understand why unpaid workers are having to go to food banks, it’s become clear the Trump Administration doesn’t fully understand the needs of the working class.
As someone who represents Northern Virginia, however, Gerry Connolly is keenly aware of the impact the shutdown had on federal workers since so many of them live in his district. That is why he was so quick to point out how the shutdown was avoidable and should have never put federal workers at risk. This is especially the case when you consider Trump didn’t get what he wanted even after holding workers hostage.
There was no funding for a wall a long the southern border in the new agreement, even though Trump had claimed even a short term deal would have to include a “substantial downpayment” if he were to sign it. He even spent a significant amount of time during his press conference speaking about how he still wants the wall and is prepared to declare a national emergency to get funding for the wall if Congress won’t approve it for him.
In other words, this was a big victory for Democrats and the leadership of Speaker Nancy Pelosi but Trump is trying to make it clear he’ll use whatever destructive tactics he can while trying to get his way — even if it isn’t what’s in the best interests of the American public.