The vast majority are labeling this as President Trump “caving in” to Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats. As a matter of fact, RealClear Politics posted an article stating that the media outlets set aside their usual differences and uniformly agreed that he caved.
In addition, both Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer were literally gloating about how she won against Trump right after he announced that he would end the shutdown.
However, in my opinion, the President did not cave… Unless you are looking at this with very limited vision.
President Trump’s objective in shutting down the government was to get funding for the wall. If he would have reopened the government and abandoned that goal, that would have been caving. That is not what happened.
During the negotiations for the wall funding during the shutdown, many Democrats- including Chuck Schumer- petitioned President Trump to open the government and continue the debate on the wall funding. They felt that the government should not be held hostage while negotiations take place.
President Trump made a strategic move in allowing the government to reopen. For starters, now there are no excuses for their unwillingness to negotiate. He has called their bluff. Everyone who had said they will negotiate once he opened the government will need to negotiate or be will be proved as a liar.
In addition, he has set the terms that the continuing resolution to fund the government is limited to three weeks. Which means, that after the three weeks pass he reserves the right to not sign another continuing resolution unless there is wall funding in place. This essentially means he has simply called a “time out” to the shutdown, not an end.
He has also stated that at the end of the three weeks, he may declare a national emergency to get the funding he needs for the wall.
This is smart negotiating.
He clearly knows that Nancy Pelosi is not going to give an inch. He is now appealing to other Democrats to get on board and negotiate. If they do, they can gain by accomplishing certain things on their agenda as well. For example, giving temporary protection to roughly 700,000 young undocumented immigrants.
President Trump has clearly shown he will definitely negotiate. After the three weeks, we will see if the Democrats are really negotiating or not. If he sees that they are making even some progress, I would bet that he would give an extension to the three week deadline.
If President Trump sees that they are not negotiating, which is what I think will happen, he will either close the government again (which I don’t think he will do) or declare a national emergency to ensure he receives the funding he needs for the wall.
If you look at the small picture & say that Pelosi “won” because Trump reopened the government, you are calling the showdown before it is over. But if you look at the big picture to see if he gets the funding for the wall, we will know soon enough who the winner is.
My bets are the President will get the funding for the wall, one way or another & deliver on another one of his promises.