BOSTON (CBS) – President Trump’s announcement of a three-week reprieve from the government shutdown was a tale of two politicians.

As he opened his remarks by accepting a Democratic proposal to pass the appropriations necessary to pay those 800,000 federal workers – a deal he could have had weeks ago without the poll-eroding fiasco that ensued – the president’s body language was noticeably un-Trump-like.

Watch Jon Keller’s Analysis

His tone was muted and his hands were far less active than normal; only occasionally would an open palm (a Trump body-language trademark that conveys openness and command) show above podium level.

But as he moved past the cave-in acknowledgment and returned to the pro-wall rhetoric of his recent Oval Office address, the hands rose and his confidence returned.

And the lies and distortions flowed: the patently false claim that furloughed federal workers “did not complain” and the undocumented one that “many” of them “encouraged me to keep going,” the insistence that “we never proposed” miles of concrete wall (late December tweet: “An all concrete Wall was NEVER ABANDONED, as has been reported by the media”), and the widely-debunked tale of how women are bound and gagged and smuggled into the country along the border rather than seduced into willingly accompanying traffickers through ports of entry.

President Trump announces a deal to end the government shutdown (CBS News)

But the key whopper was the president’s claim that Democrats have “finally and fully acknowledged that having barriers or fences or walls or whatever you want to call it will be an important part of the solution.”

That hasn’t happened.

Unless it does, according to Mr. Trump, we’ll be right back in the soup again in three weeks, with the added excitement of a highly controversial use of presidential emergency powers to grab funds for the wall that even top Republicans have been warning against.

What happened to prompt today’s concession?

Tanking poll numbers, no doubt, and increasingly emphatic warnings from Senate Republicans, six of whom bailed on the party line in yesterday’s vote. Trump-era lore holds that he is a master of distraction, so maybe the prospect of shifting some limelight away from the Roger Stone indictment played a role.

Perhaps the debate over border security that is now supposed to unfold will put Speaker Pelosi on the defensive and elicit more support for the White House position.

Then again, five weeks worth of presidential jawboning just achieved the opposite.

Jon Keller

Comments (2)
  1. Three Weeks, all this time. Congress, and our President, can only come up, with a three week solution to the Budget Crisis. What joke our elected officals, have become. Instead running around the country, and campaigning for President. Traveling around on the Taxpayers dollar Congress should keep their sorry asses, in Washington, until they come up with along term solution to the National Budget Crisis. The free ride, gravy train is over, get to work.

    1. Theodore Oule says:

      They should also spend some time on actually FIXING the nation’s immigration laws instead of all of the posturing…

      To the staffs of our Senior Senator who has chosen to forsake her recent re-election to the Senate to satisfy her ego and of our Junior Senator, also known as the distinguished Third Senator of Massachusetts:

      Please inform your principals that their constituents are grossly unhappy that you are unwilling to take the time to achieve consensus on the issues of immigration in our nation, It has become increasingly apparent that you are all perfectly content with the way things are, otherwise you would have done something about it.

      Whether you are unable to achieve consensus or happy with the way things are, neither are acceptable to the people that have elected you.

      I know that you read the opinion columns of your home-town press. You’d be absolutely incompetent if you didn’t.

      But then again, there is always that possibility given the continued inaction by those who claim to be our representatives and the apparent failures of those, their staffs, to convince those representatives of the fact that The People are fed up with the inaction.

      You’re supposed to be the “woke” ones in our political world. Isn’t it time that you woke up?

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s