'No Particular Rush. We'll See What Happens.'
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This is stunning.
For the past week the Trump administration has been ignoring the real threat, the number one immediate danger to America, and one relatively easy to take care of: keeping the federal government funded. As of midnight April 28, one week from today, unless Congress and the president act to fund the government, the government will shut down.
There are 2.2 million Americans who work for the federal government. All but those deemed essential would be furloughed – forced to not work – until the government is funded. They would likely be paid retroactively after returning to work, causing them personal financial hardship in the short-term, and forcing taxpayers to pay for their unrequested "time off."
But it seems President Trump is unconcerned about this looming crisis, because he's insisting the bill to keep the government running include money for his border wall, which no one wants.
For the past week Trump and his administration have been more concerned about the day after April 28: April 29, the end of his first 100 days in office. Why? Because he has little to show for it.
Despite falsely claiming that his administration has accomplished more than any presidential administration in history, Trump has accomplished little. And kept few of the promised he made during the campaign, starting with what he would accomplish on day one, then the first 30 days, first 90 days, and first 100 days.
So now he's scrambling, and either really screwing up, or lying – or both.
Trump and his team have been promising to unveil a new health care reform package – repealing and replacing ObamaCare – since last week. Over the past few days the White House has said there will be a vote on the bill, which has not been released, next Wednesday. On Friday the White House said the text of the bill would be released on Saturday.
BREAKING: Senate Budget Cmte. staff is working on health care deal language now, hope it can be sent out today or tomorrow - sr. WH official— CNBC (@CNBC) April 21, 2017
Congress is of an entirely different opinion – more proof the White House has no idea what's going on:
sense I'm getting from Senate is they were, um, surprised to be told by WH that the budget committee is drafting health care (they aren't)— Sam Stein (@samsteinhp) April 21, 2017
senior Senate GOP aide tells me "we're not drafting anything."— Sam Stein (@samsteinhp) April 21, 2017
All they're doing is reviewing House GOP language https://t.co/WPJqIHFIeW
This Politico reporter sums it up:
Quite telling. The White House said the SENATE budget committee is working on the health care deal. House is dealing w it 1st. not sen. https://t.co/3mGzD7aaxi— Jake Sherman (@JakeSherman) April 21, 2017
CNBC cited a WH source. The WH seems truly befuddled about what's going on on Capitol Hill. https://t.co/hlncdO09A2— Jake Sherman (@JakeSherman) April 21, 2017
Meanwhile, as all this was happening, Friday afternoon President Trump in an interview with the Associated Press announced he would be revealing a "massive" tax cut for individuals and businesses, the "biggest ever," on Wednesday.
Minutes later, the White House walked back the President's promise, saying, basically, Wednesday, or whenever.
"The President was saying what we've been saying all along, that he wants to do tax reform as quickly as possible while still doing it right," the White House explained, totally lying, as that's not what President Trump said, not at all.
Shortly after the correction, at the Treasury Dept., President Trump told reporters that they've been working on this massive tax cut for a long time, but officially the work will begin on Wednesday. So, he went from ready to announce on Wednesday a fully-developed tax reform plan with a massive tax cut, to starting to work on tax reform Wednesday.
Is this insane?
Leaving Treasury with Secretary Steve Mnuchin, Trump ran in to a few reporters, who smartly asked him how he will deliver a massive tax cut and tax reform plan and get a vote on health care reform, including repealing and replacing ObamaCare, all on Wednesday.
Now, keep in mind that Friday morning, an exasperated Trump, knowing he has accomplished absolutely nothing, tweeted angrily, "No matter how much I accomplish during the ridiculous standard of the first 100 days, & it has been a lot (including S.C.), media will kill!"
(UPDATE: NCRM's Contributing Editor, Ryan Jent, tells me S.C. stands for Supreme Court, not South Carolina – my mistake.)
Back to the reporters at Treasury.
Asked how he will accomplish all that, Trump's response: "It's going to be great. It will happen."
As reporters pressed, Trump responds again, "It'll happen. We'll see what happens, no particular rush. We'll see what happens."
"But health care is coming along well. The government is coming along really well. Lot of good things are happening."
"Doesn't matter if it's next week – next week doesn't matter."
Something is very, very wrong. No one has any idea what's going on, least of all President Trump.
If it weren't so dangerous, it might be comical. But we're, ultimately, talking about people lives, whether or not they'll be able to pay their bills, keep food on the table, get or stay healthy.
"No particular rush. We'll see what happens."
Trump doesn't see tax cuts as a way for to help poor Americans gain a bit of financial security (it's a bad way), he see tax cuts as a to-do list check-off, something to score points with. Trump doesn't see fixing or reforming health care as a way to save lives, or help Americans' finances, he sees it as a check on his to-do list.
President Trump has no inkling that every single thing he does has an effect on not just all Americans, but the world.
And that's frightening too.