House Republicans have already lost their budget showdown battle. They have no leverage for getting anything they want out of it. At least two vulnerable House Republicans running in toss-up races are reportedly negotiating with the Democrats on a deal to keep the government running; only five Republicans would be needed for such a deal to succeed. Not only have Republicans gotten nothing out of this, they may not even be able to make their desired shutdown happen.
If you don’t want to take my word for it, just ask Donald Trump. He announced tonight on social media that “The Republicans lost big on Debt Ceiling.” He’s right, they did. Trump says Republicans “got NOTHING” out of it. He’s right, they got nothing. Trump also says Republicans are now “worried that they will be BLAMED” for a shutdown. Can’t believe I’m saying this, but Trump is once again correct about this.
Of course even when Trump is occasionally right about things, it’s only by accident, and he always immediately goes back to being wrong. True to form, after Trump laid out the above reasoned case for why House Republicans shouldn’t (and may not) bother going through with a shutdown, he then labeled his own prior words as being “Wrong!!!”
Yes, Trump now seems to be arguing with himself. Of course Trump is still insisting that a shutdown will delay or defund Jack Smith’s criminal probe against him, but everyone in the real world agrees that the probe wouldn’t be impacted by a shutdown at all. So Trump is now insisting that his own thoughts are “Wrong!!!” and then betting all his chips on an imaginary solution. But he’s correct in that the threat of a shutdown has been a complete failure. House Republicans are in freefall, and everyone – including them – knows it.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report