Tags: shutdown | mulvaney | christmas | trump

Shutdown Politics: Will It Hurt Republicans?

mick mulvaney listens during a news conference at the department of justice in washington.

Mick Mulvaney, acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Director of the Office of Management. (Jacquelyn Martin/AP)

By Sunday, 23 December 2018 09:08 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Incoming White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney warned on Sunday that it was “very possible” the government shutdown could last until January. 

So, as members of congress returned home for holidays and the President announced his family was spending Christmas at the White House, speculation began over whether the Republicans would eventually pay at the polls for the government shutdown.

Political scientists who spoke to Newsmax voiced disparate views.

“I don’t think this will hurt the GOP in the long run,” said Henry Olsen of the Center for Ethics and Public Policy, author of a much-praised book entitled, “The Blue Collar Republican."

“Most shutdown battles are forgotten soon after they are resolved.”

Olsen predicted that “it won’t help the GOP expand its base, but most of the base will like the fight.”

Norm Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute disagreed.

Ornstein told Newsmax: “When Trump feels cornered, he does two things: he looks for a big distraction to take media attention away from his legal and other troubles, and he doubles down on exciting and activating his base.

“So the shutdown accomplishes both goals, even as it sticks it, big time, to Republicans in Congress. And keep in mind that if this goes on for any length of time, it will be the Department of Homeland Security employees, from Border Patrol to ICE to Customs, who will be furloughed or who will have to work long hours without being paid until  after the shutdown is over. Trump is for Trump. No one else.”

Historian David Pietrusza, author of the critically-acclaimed Theodore Roosevelt biography entitled “TR’s Last War,” took a centrist point of view.

“Trump's "Read my lips, I'll shut it down" quickly allowed by "I won't shut it down," then by "I will," etc. impresses only the hardest core Trumpites,” Pietrusza told us, “But two years is a long way out in political terms, and issues both large and small will intervene between today and November 2020.”

He added that “in any case, we tend to forget that House Republicans lost only three seats in 1996--small change compared to Republican losses in 2018. We are also in some small sense becoming used to partisan shutdowns. Each succeeding one commands less interest. We may not like them, but we know they are hardly the end of the world, or even close to it, merely another performance of Washington DC kabuki theatre--albeit one without subtitles.”

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

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Incoming White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney warned on Sunday that it was "very possible" the government shutdown could last until January.
shutdown, mulvaney, christmas, trump
Sunday, 23 December 2018 09:08 PM
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