Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) expressed his concern with Donald Trump on Tuesday and said he is growing more worried that the president will shut down the government again just to try and stop impeachment.
“I’m increasingly worried that President Trump may want to shut down the government again because of impeachment, an impeachment inquiry. He always likes to create diversions,” Schumer told reporters during a weekly press conference.
“I hope and pray he won’t want to cause another government shutdown cause it might be a diversion away from impeachment. It’s very worrisome to me,” Schumer added.
Congress needs to pass 12 appropriations bills, either individually or as a package, before Nov. 21 or agree to another short-term continuing resolution (CR) in order to avoid a shutdown.
Trump’s White House did not offer any reassurance that it would not shut down the government.
Eric Ueland, the White House director of legislative affairs, demurred when pressed by reporters on Tuesday if he would guarantee there would not be a shutdown.
“In terms of a shutdown, obviously there are many weeks between now and Nov. 21, so we’ll take it each day as it comes,” he said.
Pressed if the impeachment fight made it harder to fund the government he added: “Look I’m hopeful that it doesn’t. I’m hopeful that Congress doesn’t get distracted from some of these core priorities that the president’s laid out and that people are interested in making progress on. But that’s really going to be up to Congress.”
Schumer added on Tuesday that if lawmakers were “left to our own devices” he thought Congress “could work out an agreement to quickly fund the government.”