Schumer: ‘There Will be No Additional Appropriations to Pay for Border Wall. It is Done’

By CNSNews.com Staff | December 16, 2018 | 9:47am EST
President Donald Trump and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer in the Oval Office, Dec. 11, 2018. (Getty Images/Mark WIlson)

(CNSNews.com) - Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D.-N.Y.) said on the Senate floor on Thursday that there will be no funding for President Donald Trump’s plan to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border because the Democrats in Congress will never allow it.

“I want to be crystal clear. There will be no additional appropriations to pay for the border wall. It is done,” Schumer said.

“The President’s position on the wall is totally contradictory, ill-informed, and frankly irresponsible,” Schumer said.

 

Schumer indicated that congressional Democrats would not agree to fund the border wall even if Trump “shutdown” the government to try to make them do it.

However, Congress has already enacted the appropriations bills to fund 75 percent of the federal government—including the Department of Defense—so it would not be possible at this point for either Congress or the president to shut down the entire government.

“President Trump has several ways to avoid a shutdown,” Schumer said. “He should pick one and soon, but if we wind up with a shutdown, it will be entirely the President’s fault.”

Here is the transcript of Schumer’s statement on the Senate floor telling the president the Democrats will not agree to fund a border wall:

Mr. President, we have just a little over a week to come to some agreement on how to fund the government past next Friday.

Leader Pelosi and I have given the President two options to keep the government open. Both are noncontroversial. Neither contain any Democratic demand. We just want to keep the government open. So far, President Trump has not accepted either offer. The President appears to be clinging to his demand for billions of dollars for a border wall, and from what we saw in the Oval Office and news reports about his reaction after our meeting, President Trump is willing to throw a temper tantrum and shut down the government unless he gets his way.

I want to be crystal clear. There will be no additional appropriations to pay for the border wall. It is done. The President repeatedly promised that Mexico would pay for his unnecessary and ineffective border wall, in his words, ‘100 percent.’ On Tuesday, he said he would be ‘proud’ to shut down the government unless U.S. taxpayers pay for it. Now, just this morning, the President tweeted that Mexico will pay for the wall the wall through savings from the new NAFTA. Well, Mr. President, if you say Mexico is going to pay for the wall through NAFTA—which it certainly will not—then I guess we don’t have to. Let’s fund the government.

Honestly, if the President really believed what he tweeted this morning, that his new NAFTA would pay for the wall, he wouldn’t be threatening to shut down the government unless American taxpayers fund his wall. He can’t have it both ways. The President’s position on the wall is totally contradictory, ill-informed, and frankly irresponsible. It is not a serious proposal. It is a throwaway idea the President used—used in the campaign and still uses—to fire up his base.

A Trump temper tantrum and shutdown threat isn’t going to change any minds in Congress. President Trump has several ways to avoid a shutdown. He should pick one and soon, but if we wind up with a shutdown, it will be entirely the President’s fault. President Trump himself would not dispute that in the Oval Office on Tuesday. He almost bragged that he would shut down the government—what irresponsibility.

I would just like to remind my friend the majority leader that if we arrive at a Trump shutdown, the onus for reopening the government will soon fall in his lap. When Democrats take control of the House in January, Democrats will pass one of our two options to fund the government, and then Leader McConnell and Senate Republicans will be left holding the bag for a Trump shutdown if they don’t pass our bill now.

So there is no way for my Republican friends to avoid the issue. There is no way for Leader MCCONNELL to avoid the issue, fearful of President Trump as they all might be. Either Republicans help deal with the President now or they will be left dealing with a much bigger problem in January.

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