Forget red-state Democrats: GOP senators up in 2020 have the most to lose in Trump’s shutdown fiasco
As Donald Trump runs a fool’s errand to try to enlist some red-state House Democrats in his border wall debacle, the real question is when GOP senators up for reelection in 2020 are going to decouple themselves from Trump’s suicide mission.
After all, it was Trump’s epic anti-immigrant caravan meltdown that decimated House Republicans last November, and based on PPP polling out last week, several Senate Republicans should soon be hedging their bets. So far, Colorado Sen. Corey Gardner and Maine Sen. Susan Collins have signaled tepid opposition to Trump’s shutdown and support for reopening the government. Their voters also showed some of highest aversion to Trump’s position in the PPP poll, with 58 percent of Coloradans and 63 percent of Mainers opposed to keeping the government closed until wall funding is provided.
But an unforeseen development Tuesday from a Democratic senator representing a very Trumpy state could signal where the Senate is headed.
From colleague Guerin Hays. Manchin on gov’t shutdown. “Never in my life seen workers used as a pawn..We agree on six bills..McConnell do your job”
— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) January 15, 2019
That’s exactly the type of pressure McConnell will have to feel from his own caucus in order to actually pass the funding bills that have been languishing. The reason Sen. Manchin’s throttling of McConnell is so telling is that Manchin would never be walking out on that limb if he wasn’t seeing something in the polling from his home state. Indeed, West Virginia’s GOP senator, Shelley Moore Capito, has also voiced support for reopening the government. It’s no coincidence that both West Virginia senators from different parties are taking a similar position, albeit with clear tonal differences.