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Republicans Know They Are Blamed for the #TrumpShutdown – And So Do the American People


President Donald Trump:  “’It’s Trump — they’re going to blame me no matter what,’ the president told aides on Friday.” [Politico, 1/20/18]

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC):  “To believe that you can successfully blame Democrats for a shutdown over the DACA debate is naïve.” [NYT, 1/15/18]

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO): “I think it’s a loser for everybody, but it’s probably more of a loser if you’re in control.” [Washington Post, 1/10/18]

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT):  “We always do, even when it’s their fault.” [WSJ, 1/18/18]

Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ):  “Q: do you worry the president's actions over the past week will make it easier for Democrats to say it's Republicans' fault if there's a government shutdown? Senator Jeff Flake: ........................yes.” [BuzzFeed, 1/18/18]

Rep. Dave Trott (R-MI): “I think it’s the president’s fault. He hasn’t led. No question in my mind about that. He hasn’t led on this or many other issues. … The voters are not going to get that far into the weeds to understand the nuance of where we are. So we’ll all get blamed but mostly the Republican administration will get blamed — as they should.” [Detroit News, 1/19/18]

Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA): “We’re in the majority. We control all three branches. So we’re going to get blamed whether we deserve it or not.” [CNN, 1/20/18]

Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA):  “When there are shutdowns, our side usually takes the hit,” … “It will be difficult for us to deflect the blame — whether we deserve it or not.” [NBC News, 1/17/18]

Rep. Mark Sanford (R-SC):  “’The perception of most Republicans is that a shutdown does not accrue to Republican benefit. It’s a relatively tough sale.” [Politico, 1/17/18]

Rep. Peter King (R-NY): “We can’t blame it on the Democrats because we control the House and have a Republican president.” [Newsday, 1/2/18]

Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele:  “Despite the rhetorical effort to paste Democrats with ‘Schumer’s Shutdown’ and to redefine what constitutes majority control of the senate (‘60’? Really?), the fact remains that this shutdown rests at the feet of the GOP and it appears a majority of Americans agree. I don’t like it. It certainly could have been avoided, but the President wound up negotiating against himself by taking a potential agreement off the table, leaving Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to lament, ‘As soon as we figure out what he is for, then I would be convinced that we were not just spinning our wheels.’ That put Republicans in the position to spin their wheels right into another government shutdown. Pitiful.” [Politico, 1/20/18]

Former Adviser to McCain 2000 and 2008 Campaigns John Weaver: “Trump created the DACA crisis. The congressional wing of the GOP refused to fund CHIP. Trump & GOP ignored the pleas of the Pentagon for a fully funded budget. All of this is on them.” [Tweet, 1/20/18]

Senior Senate GOP Aide: “Like one of his buildings, this shutdown will have Trump written all over it.” [Weekly Standard, 1/20/18]

Former Chief Strategist for Bush-Cheney 2004 Matthew Dowd:  “DACA analogy: The President lights a forest fire which is about to burn down many homes, says he wants to put it out, Dems agree it needs to be put out, but President won’t allow the fire to be put out until he gets money for a monument to himself.” [Tweet, 1/17/18]

Former Republican Staff Director of Senate Budget Committee G. William Hoagland: “G. William Hoagland, a former Republican staff director for the Senate Budget Committee, warned, ‘When Republicans control the House and Senate and the White House, a government shutdown under their watch just looks like they can absolutely do nothing.’” [NYT, 11/28/17]

Republican Pollster Whit Ayers:  “During the 17-day shutdown of 2013, ‘the Republican Party’s favorable rating dropped 10 points in a matter of days, and it took a year to fully recover,’ said Whit Ayres, a veteran GOP pollster. ‘It would take an act of extraordinary political agility to avoid a similar fate today.’” [Politico, 1/17/18]

Former Deputy Chief of Staff to House Majority Leader Doug Heye:  “If there is a shutdown, GOP will - and should - get blame. If we can’t keep our own House (and Senate) in order...” [Tweet, 1/16/18]

Washington Post Conservative Columnist Jennifer Rubin:  “What is apparent for all to see is that Democrats have no responsibility to concoct a solution to address the Republicans’ abject incompetence. When a majority party cannot decide what it wants, and cannot find the votes, they are admitting they cannot govern.” [Washington Post, 1/18/18]

TRUMP BEFORE HE WAS PRESIDENT: “if there is a shutdown I think it would be a tremendously negative mark on the president of the United States.”

VIEIRA: So if there were a partial shutdown of the government come Friday, that would be OK with you.

TRUMP: In my opinion--you know, I hear the Democrats are going to be blamed and the Republicans are going to be blamed. I actually think the president would be blamed. If there is a shutdown, and it's not going to be a horrible shutdown because, as you know, things will sort of keep going.

VIEIRA: Well, it's a partial shutdown, right.

TRUMP: But if there is a shutdown I think it would be a tremendously negative mark on the president of the United States. He's the one that has to get people together. [NBC, 4/7/11]

VAN SUSTEREN: First question, we're in a hell of a time trying to negotiate here in Washington. So, tell me, if you were president, what would you do?

TRUMP: You have to get everybody in a room. You have to be a leader. The president has to lead. [Fox News, 10/7/13]


Washington Post-ABC News Poll:  48 Percent Blame Trump and Congressional Republicans.  “By a 20-point margin, more Americans blame President Trump and Republicans rather than Democrats for a potential government shutdown, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. A 48 percent plurality says Trump and congressional Republicans are mainly responsible for the situation resulting from disagreements over immigration laws and border security, while 28 percent fault Democrats.” [Washington Post, 1/19/18]