Minnesota Lawmakers Respond Feverishly to Border Wall Shutdown

It was a wild week in Washington, which gave Minnesota’s politicians ample opportunity to attack President Donald Trump.

In a Friday appearance on The Dan Obeidallah Show, Rep.-elect Ilhan Omar (D-MN-05) said Trump’s border wall “is deeply rooted in xenophobia.”

“If Trump shuts down the government: 420,000 Americans will be forced to work without pay over the holidays. 380,000 will be furloughed. 30 million small businesses will lose access to loans,” she later wrote on Twitter. “All of this, over a wall that Americans don’t want. A wast of billions of dollars.”

“Hey GOP, your incompetency is mind numbing, three shutdowns in one year. For the sake of the American people, get it together or get out of the way,” Omar wrote on Saturday.

Minnesota Attorney General-elect Keith Ellison echoed Omar’s claims, saying he feels “so bad for the 1000s of hardworking federal employees sent home without pay, at Christmas, so Donald Trump can build a Hate Wall and distract from his failure, scandal, collusion.”

Rep.-elect Dean Phillips (D-MN-03), meanwhile, was disturbed by Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis’ departure from the White House.

“This is not American greatness. The chaos in and exodus from the WH [White House] pose a real threat to our nation, and the erosion of our standing in the world is palpable. It’s time for patriotic Ds and Rs to join together, convert a crisis into a collaboration, and protect our democracy,” Phillips tweeted Thursday.

In response to the temporary government shutdown, Phillips claimed Saturday that he “won’t accept pay as long as hard-working federal employees are denied theirs.”

“And once the shutdown ends, it’s time to consider how we incentivize Congress to produce responsible budgets vs. the $1 trillion deficit forecast in 2019,” he added, but it’s unclear if Phillips is even receiving a congressional salary yet, since he has yet to be sworn in.

Sen. Tina Smith (D-MN) claimed on Twitter Saturday that a “shutdown isn’t good for anyone.”

“That’s why Senate Republicans and Democrats came together on a reasonable deal that would’ve kept the government open. The president rejected it,” she continued. “That means Americans will be denied some vital government services and thousands of federal employees will go into the holidays without the certainty of a paycheck.”

A new Quinnipiac University poll showed this week that support for the border wall has reached a record high, but is still a minority position. According to the poll, 43 percent of Americans support building the wall, while 54 percent don’t.

Additionally, a GoFundMe launched last Sunday has already raised $15.3 million for the border wall by 251,882 donors.

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Anthony Gockowski is managing editor of Battleground State News and The Minnesota Sun. Follow Anthony on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Ilhan Omar” by Lorie Schaul. CC BY-SA 2.0.
Background Photo “Minnesota Capital” by McGhiever. CC BY-SA 4.0.








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