Why This Wall Fight Now? Good Question!
From Matt Walsh:
There haven't been nearly enough conservatives demanding Trump explain why he waited for two years, until Democrats controlled the house, to take this stand about the wall. Nice speech last night. He could have given it a year ago. Why didn't he?
— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) January 9, 2019
As a reminder: a year ago, Schumer and Trump were discussing a deal for $25 billion, not $5 billion. Negotiations blew up with a lot of finger-pointing in the aftermath:
During the Friday meeting, Trump and Schumer agreed that most of the $25 billion would be appropriated at the start, with more doled out in the future, according to a person familiar with the meeting who spoke on the condition of anonymity to talk frankly about the exchange.
Aides to Schumer would not comment on the exact price tag.
Over the weekend, Schumer described the meeting several times in public remarks, saying that Trump “picked a number for the wall, and I accepted it.” At other points Schumer said he “reluctantly” agreed to discuss constructing a wall — but never revealed the sum.
But Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said: “Once Schumer started talking about the president backing away from the deal that never existed, he said he offered the president everything on the wall and the military. That just wasn’t true. . . . The president knew Schumer was mistreating him.”
Matt House, a spokesman for Schumer, said Mulvaney “once again isn’t telling the truth. Senator Schumer offered the president everything he asked for on the border and more than he asked for on defense.”
One major sticking point was Stephen Miller’s insistence on chain migration being part of any compromise:
At the White House, the administration said Tuesday that it expects Congress to move beyond a bipartisan deal to protect the undocumented immigrants that the president rejected during a vulgar exchange with lawmakers nearly two weeks ago.
“It’s totally unacceptable to the president and should be declared dead on arrival,” press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said during a White House news briefing of a plan being crafted by Sens. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) and Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.).
She said their plan, not yet written into formal legislation, would not sufficiently secure the border and would increase legal family-based immigration, a practice that conservatives are hoping to curb to dissuade migrants from entering the country.
You don’t hear much about that these days. One gets the sense that if Schumer offered the same deal today — $25 billion for legislative DACA — Trump would jump at it.
Instead, Mr. Art of the Deal let the moment pass. And here we are, with Democrats in control of the House, in a far worse negotiating position.
So he chooses to make a stand now?
Remember when Republicans passed legislation to repeal ObamaCare when Obama was in office, he refused to pass the same legislation when Trump was in office?
This is what Republicans do. They fake support for things. That’s what this shutdown is about. Convincing you they care, when they don’t.
[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]