Sunday, January 21, 2018

Trump Calls For Nuclear-Option To Reopen Government

Trump urges GOP to use ‘Nuclear Option’ during government shutdown: President Trump on Sunday continued to blast Democrats over immigration during the showdown and urged Republicans to use the “Nuclear Option” to reach a long-term solution.

“Great to see how hard Republicans are fighting for our Military and Safety at the Border. The Dems just want illegal immigrants to pour into our nation unchecked,” the president wrote on Twitter. “If stalemate continues, Republicans should go to 51% (Nuclear Option) and vote on real, long term budget, no C.R.’s!,” he posted.

Democrats and Republicans have been at loggerheads since the Senate failed to pass a temporary spending bill – a C.R., or continuing resolution – that would have kept the government funded until Feb. 16.

Trump’s reference to the “nuclear option” would require a change in Senate rules allowing the bill to pass with a simple majority of 51 votes instead of the current 60 vote margin. The GOP controls the chamber 51-49, but Democrats are insistent they will not vote for a spending bill unless there are protections for “Dreamers,” young immigrants who were brought to the United States illegally by their parents.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell shot down Trump’s suggestion on Sunday. “The Republican Conference opposes changing the rules on legislation,” a spokesman for McConnell told The Hill.

Negotiations have been largely overshadowed by name calling over the weekend. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said trying to work out a deal with Trump is like “negotiating with Jell-O.” White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said the New York Democrat will have to “up his game a little bit and be a little bit more honest with the president.”

Meanwhile, McConnell has scheduled a vote 1 a.m. Monday for a three-week stopgap measure. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Sunday expressed opposition to using the so-called “nuclear option” to allow the Senate to pass a long-term budget with 51 votes. “The Republican Conference opposes changing the rules on legislation,” a spokesman for McConnell said.