After weeks of trying to blame Democrats for the Trump shutdown, Donald Trump‘s own chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, appears to have claimed ownership of the next shutdown if an agreement can’t be reached to fun the government in three weeks.
Trump infamously claimed “proud” ownership of the government shutdown in early December, then spent the next month-plus trying to shift the blame to Democrats before finally caving in and reopening government for three more weeks.
But on Sunday morning’s edition of CBS News’ Face the Nation, Mulvaney appeared to close off the option of blaming Democrats if another shutdown occurs.
Anchor Margaret Brennan‘s very first question for Mulvaney was “Is [Trump] really prepared to shut down the government again in three weeks?”
Instead of claiming it would be Democrats shutting the government down in such a case, Mulvaney bluntly replied “Yeah, I think he actually is.”
Mulvaney went on to say that Trump “doesn’t want to shut the government down,” yet another indication that it would indeed be Trump, not the Democrats, shutting the government down.
And later in the interview, Brennan asked Mulvaney why Trump thinks “the outcome will be different in 21 days? Democrats remained largely unified. It was Republicans in the Senate who broke ranks.”
Mulvaney claimed that many Democrats “had come to us and said, you know what, we think you might be right on this barrier thing, but we cannot negotiate with you during a shutdown. We don’t like the fact that a president might use a shutdown as a negotiating tool, so if you open the government up, we’ll negotiate with you in good faith on a border barrier.”
In recounting this supposed encounter, Mulvaney did not quibble with the premise that Trump would “use a shutdown as a negotiating tool.”
Watch the clip above, via CBS News.
[Featured image via screengrab]
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