GOP Rep. Ryan Costello of Pennsylvania delivered an absolutely eviscerating criticism of President Donald Trump on Thursday, saying that Trump “fell in line” behind Fox host Sean Hannity and others in respect to demanding funds for his border wall.
Speaking to MSNBC’s Craig Melvin, Costello called the partial government shutdown following Trump’s refusal to pass a spending bill without border wall funding “the president’s shutdown,” stating that Trump bent to the whim of angry conservative pundits when he decided to back out of an agreement made by Congressional leaders to pass a government spending bill with no border wall appropriations last week, thereby triggering a government shutdown.
“The Senate voted 100 to 0 to pass a clean CR [continuing resolution] and sent it to the House,” Costello said. “Sean Hannity and a few other people screamed fire. The president then fell in line behind Sean Hannity.”
The only problem with this act of bravery is that Costello is leaving Congress in a week, having turned in a voting record where he aligned with Trump’s position 96 percent of the time. If only he had been in a position to do something to help rein in Trump’s worst impulses over the past two years.
Considering how irked Costello is that Trump gave into tantrums of conservatives who support spending money on a U.S.-Mexico border wall, though, it’s rather notable that he also supported spending money on a U.S.-Mexico border wall. Here’s how Costello continued after his huge Trump burn:
We in the House voted, and I voted for it, for an additional $5 billion and then about $8 billion in disaster relief, on top of the clean CR. Democrats were not willing to go along because they didn’t want any more wall funding in there. We sent it to the Senate. I don’t think there was any reasonable expectation that the Senate would take that bill up and vote for the wall funding because you need eight Democrats in the Senate, and so the fact that we’re in shutdown now is foreseeable, and I don’t see a scenario where the government opens back up until a new Congress is sworn in.
Slightly adding to the hilarity of all of this is that Mr. Not My Problem Anymore has apparently been workshopping this line since before Christmas:
Costello did have one more burn to deliver, however, before leaving public office for a second career of lobbying for Comcast or being a Reasonable Conservative on MSNBC (or both).
“Rule No. 1 in negotiation is don’t negotiate against yourself,” Costello said. “The president had Nancy and Chuck in the Oval Office and he negotiated against himself, and now he’s in a corner, and I’m not sure how he backs himself out of that corner.”
Trump is surely finished now.
[h/t The Hill]