"The Democrats don’t want to let us have strong borders — only for one reason. You know why? Because I want it,” President Trump said Dec. 26, to the laughter of U.S. troops at Iraq’s Al Asad Air Base. “But you gave me an idea, just looking at this warrior group. I think I’ll say, ‘I don’t want the wall.’ And then they’re going to give it to me.”
Trump is on to something. Democrats seem determined to stop his plans for a southern-border wall as revenge for beating Hillary Clinton. As Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said Sunday: "They want Trump to lose more than they want America to win."
In Fiscal Year 2018 alone, federal officers apprehended 396,579 illegal aliens on the southwest border. The left loves the fact that those who were caught and released, and others who break into America undetected, likely will become Democrats. So, from their perspective, why give President Trump this win?
Some of this might be semantics. The name for the U.S.–Mexican divide could matter politically.
“I had over a half a dozen Senate Democrats tell me just Friday [Dec. 21], that if we call it anything but a wall, they’d be all for it,” Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., told Fox Business Network’s Maria Bartiromo on Dec. 23. “This is ridiculous. This is all about resisting Trump and not taking care of the business that we have as a Senate.”
Building “a fence” seems less than what Trump promised. Perhaps, then, erecting a “barrier” would let Democrats believe that they kept Republicans from getting what they want while Republicans just might find that they got what they need.
Such a linguistic compromise could end the nearly two-week partial shutdown. After all, this word worked just fine for then-presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s in 2015: “I voted numerous times when I was a senator to spend money to build a barrier to try to prevent illegal immigrants from coming in,” she bragged to voters on the campaign trail. “I do think you have to control your borders.”
However, even that might not satisfy today’s Democrats. They seem committed to keeping a quarter of the federal government shuttered if that’s what it takes to stop President Trump from fulfilling his biggest campaign pledge.