The Trump administration fanned out over the cable nets on Sunday with a message for Democrats: the border wall will be funded.
They didn’t say in so many words that President Trump would veto a spending bill to keep the government operating past this weekend if funding for the wall was not included. But officials sounded confident that the funds to build the wall will be part of the spending package.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Sunday led the Sunday show charge, expressing confidence the border wall would be funded.
“I can’t imagine the Democrats would shut down the government over an objection to building a down payment on a wall that can end the lawlessness,” Sessions said on ABC’s “This Week.”
He said he doesn’t expect the Mexican government to “appropriate money” for the wall, but added there are ways “we can deal with our trade situation to create the revenue to pay for it.”
“We’re going to get it paid for one way or the other,” Sessions said on ABC’s “This Week” when asked if there is any evidence Mexico will pay for the wall as Trump promised on the campaign trail.
Sessions said the administration’s goal is to put an end to illegality and “create a lawful system of immigration where people apply to come here, they wait their turn.”
Building a wall along the country’s southern border will help the president to fulfill his promise to the American people, he said.
“That’s what they want,” he said. “And I believe Congress will eventually deliver.”
Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said the president will likely be “insistent” that an upcoming spending bill includes funding for his wall.
“I think it goes without saying that the president has been pretty straightforward about his desire and the need for a border wall,” Kelly said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
“So I would suspect — he’ll do the right thing for sure — but I suspect he will be insistent on the funding.”
White House chief of staff Reince Priebus said he thinks the government can avoid a shutdown and expressed confidence a bill that is “satisfactory” to the president will pass.
Progress has already been made “in regard to getting money for border security,” he said on NBC’s “Meet The Press.”
Republicans can pass the funding bill without any Democrats voting for it. But there have been a few GOP House members who have expressed unease about the cost of the wall as well as exactly where it will be placed. And several Republican senators have expressed doubt about building the wall at all.
But it seems likely that Trump can crack the whip and get the doubters in line — especially since it will be tied to a bill to keep the government funded past next weekend. No Republican lawmaker is interested in emasculating their president by helping the Democrats shut down the government.
As for the Democrats, they will sputter and fume, but all they can do is squawk. If the GOP remains united, they simply don’t have the votes. That’s a reality that hasn’t sunk in yet, thanks to the hysterical threats and bluster from their base. No Democrat dare say publicly what they all know privately.
Republicans are in complete control and there’s not a darn thing Democrats can do about it.