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The Wall And The Shameful Silence Of GOP Leaders

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Last night President Trump gave a powerful speech outlining the crisis at our southern border, why the Wall is needed and why he is standing firm and refusing to sign any spending bill that does not fund the Wall.

This was all to the good, and something we’ve advocated ever since the shutdown began and CHQ Chairman Richard A. Viguerie issued a statement and news release urging the President to take his case for the Wall to the people.

However, as is all too often the case, the President was the lone voice and the lone warrior fighting for the sovereignty and national security of our country.

Indeed, had the President received any support from the Republican Party’s Capitol Hill leaders the shutdown, and the President’s speech defending it, might not have been necessary.

The silence of Republican leaders has led Democratic leaders to think they’re winning the battle over the Wall and that they can hold out longer than the President.

And why shouldn’t the Democrats think they can win? For the past two years the GOP’s congressional leaders hid whenever the subject of the Wall came up and stalled around avoiding any showdown with the Democrats over the Wall.

And let’s not forget that last year, in what can only be termed a slap in the face to the President and the millions of people who voted Republican because Trump promised to secure the southern border, the Republican congressional majority passed a spending bill that expressly prohibited the wall that we voted for.

So, it really shouldn’t have surprised us that for the past two weeks since the shutdown began there has been a deathly silence from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and House Minority Whip Steve Scalise.

Try Googling Kevin McCarthy + the Wall and the results you get are all about McCarthy’s bill to fund the Wall introduced exactly one month before the House GOP’s midterm election debacle.

Try Googling Kevin McCarthy + shutdown and you will find lots of articles about McCarthy worrying about GOP defectors on Democrat bills to end the shutdown, but not one on McCarthy explaining why the Wall is necessary to protect our national security and the quality of life for millions of American families.

On the Senate side Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), chairman of the Appropriations panel, has made clear that he doesn't think any shutdown is worthwhile. Republican Sens. Cory Gardner of Colorado and Susan Collins of Maine have already broken with Trump and called for the government to reopen even without an agreement on the border wall.

"It hurts all of us and everybody that’s looking from the outside, they’re like: What is wrong with you? Why can’t you find a solution?” said Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa, a new member of the Senate Republican leadership team.

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, who chairs the appropriations subcommittee that funds the Department of Homeland Security, said last week she is still pushing the president to support her legislation that would fund border security at a lower amount than the president wants. It passed her committee last year with bipartisan support.

“A shutdown in my view is a no-win proposition,” said Capito. “When I was going through TSA this morning coming up here [to Washington], my local TSA guys were like ‘Are we going to get paid?’ It’s just a lot of unneeded stress on a lot of people.”

Got that? The government should reopen without funding the Wall and that’s the “solution” Republican Senators like Shelby, Ernst, Gardner, Collins, and Capito prefer.

But at least give Mitch McConnell a little credit, after staying silent on the Wall for most of the past two years, McConnell woke up on the eve of the President’s speech to take to the Floor of the Senate to hit the Democrats for their rhetoric and for playing politics with the border wall.

McConnell accused Democrats of indulging in a "partisan tantrum" over the "public interest."

"Walls and barriers are not immoral," McConnell said. "How silly!"

Alluding to the Secure Fence Act of 2006, which was supported by then-Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, McConnell contended Democrats used to support "physical barriers" but are now acting out of "political spite."

"The only things that have changed between then and now are the political wins, and of course the occupant of the White House," McConnell said about the 2006 legislation authorizing 700 miles of border fence.

The Washington Examiner reports a huge majority of the Republican Party supports President Trump's handling of the partial government shutdown, according to a Huffington Post/YouGov poll.

A total of 84 percent of Republicans — 64 percent of whom strongly approve and 20 percent who somewhat approve — support Trump's refusal to accept a funding bill that does not include more than $5 billion for enhancing security operations at the U.S.-Mexico border.

The President made a powerful case for the Wall, it is time for the shameful silence of GOP leaders to end. And it is past time for Capitol Hill Republican leaders to – for once – listen to the conservative – populist base of their party and not only stand with the President on the Wall but speak for it and fight for it too.

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