My quick takeaway from Donald J. Trump’s brief speech tonight is this: The president didn’t mention the government shutdown that has been the result of this fight over whether to finance construction of The Wall.
Meanwhile, the speaker of the House and the Senate Democratic leader were all too willing and able to mention the shutdown in their rebuttal to the president’s speech.
I believe I heard a totally reasonable request from Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer: Mr. President, sign the GOP-sponsored funding bill approved by Congress and then call off the shutdown and let us negotiate a valid approach to shoring up our border security.
Schumer and Speaker Nancy Pelosi don’t want the wall. Neither do their fellow congressional Democrats; nor do an increasing number of Republicans. Indeed, the ranks of GOP lawmakers who want to end the shutdown also is growing.
We didn’t hear a word from Trump about the shutdown.
Instead, he told us yet again about the horror stories involving crimes committed by illegal immigrants. Trump is conflating those tragedies with the 12 million people who have entered this country illegally. The president is stoking fear.
Where I come from, they call that “demagoguery.”