The president spent the weekend digging in on his position, and aides say he accepts a closure that could drag into the new year.
President Donald Trump is now the “proud” owner of a government shutdown — his third. And he doesn’t seem to mind.
The threat of an extended shutdown is far less of a concern to the president than not making good on his central campaign pledge to build a border wall and looking like a fraud, according to White House aides and Trump allies. Trump spent the weekend digging in on his position behind closed doors, meeting with hard-line conservatives and signaling through his top aides that he could stomach a closure that could drag on well into the new year.
Mick Mulvaney, the acting White House chief of staff, set the bar on Sunday.
“I don’t think things are going to move very quickly here for the next couple of days,” he told Chris Wallace in an interview on Fox News.
The holiday shutdown comes amid a series of tumultuous Cabinet shakeups — Trump announced on Sunday that Defense Secretary Jim Mattis would depart earlier than expected — a stock market rout and turbulence from the Republican congressional ranks over the president’s decision to pull troops from Syria and scale back the U.S. presence in Afghanistan.