Former President Donald Trump Monday urged right-wing congressional Republicans to shut down the government “UNLESS YOU GET EVERYTHING” in crunch talks.
As a weekend deadline looms large, Trump called on his followers to refuse to compromise with moderates who want to pass a spending bill that could avert a shutdown.
“Unless you get everything, shut it down!” Trump wrote on his social media site early Monday morning. “It’s time Republicans learned how to fight!”
Trump suggested Democrats close the border with Mexico and stop the investigations into his effort to overturn the 2020 election in exchange for keeping the government open.
He claimed that the public would blame President Joe Biden if Republicans fail to pass a stopgap spending bill to keep the government running.
“Whoever is President will be blamed, in this case, Joe Biden,” he asserted.
In fact, history says it’s likely voters will blame the Republican-led House because they are trying to use the potential shutdown as leverage to impose other priorities, like unpopular cuts to domestic spending.
Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, the firebrand leader of a faction of far right-wing lawmakers, reposted Trump’s message.
He cited it as evidence that the former president is siding with him and against House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who is trying to cobble together a deal that can win approval from the deeply divided GOP caucus.
“Trump agrees with me not [McCarthy],” Gaetz tweeted. “Break the fever. Hold the line.”
Some right-wing Republicans believe a government shutdown might eventually force the GOP-controlled House to enact deep spending cuts along with a grab bag of unrelated MAGA priorities like amping up the impeachment of Biden and rushing troops to the southern border with Mexico.
In a sign of further disarray in the Republican ranks, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Georgia) late Sunday came out swinging against any additional military aid to Ukraine.
Greene, an occasional ally of McCarthy, broke with the leader over his willingness to add aid to the embattled nation that is fighting to repel a Russian invasion.
“The rule is the first step of advancing this blood money in Congress,” Greene tweeted, referring to a procedural step Republicans may vote on later Monday. “I’m a HARD NO on the rules package and a blank check for Ukraine.”
Republicans failed last week to advance a short-term funding bill that would start the process of keeping the government open.
McCarthy is now twisting arms to pass individual spending bills to fund defense and foreign operations, in the hopes of laying the groundwork for another shot at a stopgap spending bill.
Meanwhile, the Democratic-led Senate may pass a spending package of its own sometime this week with the goal of forcing McCarthy to bring it to the floor where enough moderate Republicans may cross the aisle to pass it with Democrats.
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