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In ending the shutdown, has Pelosi brought Trump to heel?

His failure to procure a single cent for a border wall is already enraging his erstwhile supporters on the right

January 25, 2019

4:17 PM

25 January 2019

4:17 PM

President Trump, to use his favorite canine terminology, choked like a dog today. In acceding to a three-week continuing resolution to fund the government, he rolled over for Nancy Pelosi and she didn’t even throw him a bone. Pelosi may not be able to muzzle the voluble Trump but she has figured out how to bring him to heel.

His failure to procure a single cent for a border wall is already enraging his erstwhile supporters on the right. Ann Coulter: ‘Good news for George Herbert Walker Bush: As of today, he is no longer the biggest wimp ever to serve as President of the United States.’ Having prompted him to fight an unwinnable battle, they’re now denouncing him for fleeing his personal Alamo.

Trump is claiming that he’ll shutdown the government in three weeks if necessary. Good luck with that. Disapproval of Trump shot up by five points to 58 percent, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll. No less than six Republican senators defected yesterday to vote for a Democratic bill to reopen the government sans wall money.

Trump simply cannot afford another foray into petulancy of the sort that terminated various government services for over a month. As Sen. Jon Tester put it, ‘He shut it down. Was it worth it? It’s the most stupid shutdown I’ve ever seen in my life. Let’s hope there can be honest negotiations, not moving the goal posts.’ Doyle McManus of the Los Angeles Times had it right. The reason Trump was fated to lose was simple: ‘Nancy Pelosi is winning her showdown with President Trump for one simple reason: She knows how to do her job better than he knows how to do his.’

That’s not changing. Trump’s hand in any future negotiations will be a weak one at best. For one thing, he’s now going to be widely perceived as a hollow man. Whether or not the shutdown lingers on as an issue for voters in 2020, the fact is that Trump’s nimbus of being a winner has been punctured. For the next two years, Trump will be a dead man walking.

So much for Trump’s claim that in November that he is ‘far greater than Reagan’ and that his accomplishments ‘blow’ him away. Ronald Reagan fired the air traffic controllers. Trump capitulated to Pelosi as soon as LaGuardia Airport was shuttered. Score one for Pelosi — and more victories may be to come. For all the talk on the left of Trump as an authoritarian, his presidency has in fact resembled something out of opera bouffe.

Coupled with today’s indictment of Roger Stone, Trump is tanking. Pelosi stuck it to him today: ‘It is very interesting to see the kinds of people that the president of the United States has surrounded himself with.’ Indeed it is. Paul Manafort, Michael Cohen, Michael Flynn, and others form quite a rogues’ gallery. The question looming over Trump is whether he or other members of his family will be joining them in the hoosegow.

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