Donald Trump has always bragged about his abilities as a negotiator and dealmaker in the business world. Of course he has no such skills, and he’s instead spent his career ripping people off on scams and bad business ideas, and then repeatedly declaring bankruptcy. Now that he’s the illegitimate President of the United States, he’s proving he has no idea how to negotiate a political deal either. Moreover, he has no idea that he lost the budget standoff.
The federal government was shut down over the weekend because an increasingly addled Trump couldn’t commit to any deal that either party offered him. Polls showed that Americans overwhelmingly blamed Trump’s side for the shutdown. That left his Republican Party so desperate to get the lights back on, it handed the Democratic Party a sweetheart deal. The Democrats got their way on CHIP funding for children’s health care, and they’re guaranteed a vote on DACA status for immigrant children within the next three weeks, or else everything gets shut right back down again.
In other words, not only did Trump and the GOP lose, they lost badly. They had to give away CHIP, which they’d been hoping to hold in reserve for the congressional elections in November, just to dig themselves out of Trump’s shutdown hole. Remarkably, Trump doesn’t even understand that he lost. Just before midnight on Monday, he tweeted this: “Big win for Republicans as Democrats cave on Shutdown. Now I want a big win for everyone, including Republicans, Democrats and DACA, but especially for our Great Military and Border Security. Should be able to get there. See you at the negotiating table!”
While Donald Trump lies nearly every time he opens his mouth, his latest tweet was a major achievement in that every single word of it was false. It was the Republicans who caved. Trump doesn’t want to negotiate anything. He certainly doesn’t want to pass DACA. And now he’s backed into a corner where if he doesn’t rapidly pass it, the government will soon be shut down yet again on his watch, and he’ll be blamed for it again. So much winning!
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report