Bernie Sanders slams ‘absurd’ introduction of anti-BDS bill in Congress

Clay Curtis
January 9, 2019

Trump was to give a speech making his case for the wall, a central promise during his 2016 campaign, in a nationally televised speech later on Tuesday.

Neither side has shown any inclination to compromise and instead looked to penalize the other for not caving.

Trump threatened last week to keep the federal government partly closed for "months or even years" if he did not get $5.7 billion for his wall at the southern border.

Democratic congressional leaders are in a stalemate with President Trump that has kept the government partially closed since December 22.

The impacts of the shutdown were widening after a weekend of fitful staff-level negotiations at the White House yielded no result. But Democratic leaders also have pushed to resolve the shutdown before dealing with those pieces of legislation. "We ought to pass bills that we believe are good policy".

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., agreed that reopening the government is the main priority but added that the bill itself is an affront to the First Amendment. "How silly", McConnell said in a speech on the Senate floor.

The separate bills Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) intends to push include funding for SNAP (food stamps), the IRS and federal mortgage programs - all very hard for Republicans to vote against.

Multiple Democrats are urging their fellow colleagues to block any consideration of bills that are unrelated to reopening the government from the current shutdown.

"If they have to vote on this over and over and over again, they have to deal with the consequences of what they're doing to the American public", said Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn. "There's an opportunity for every American to see who wants government open, and our responsibility is not to do what the president of the United States tells us to do". We have provided a number of ways to do that.

In any event, the administration isn't alone in contemplating unilateral actions. Pence is also set to speak with Senate Republicans on Wednesday.

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., will then respond from the Capitol, in part they say to correct the record after Trump speaks. "We'll just continue educating members".

Zach Gibson via Getty Images Democrats are pressuring Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to bring up bills to reopen the government. The Strengthening America's Security in the Middle East Act of 2019 combines several Middle East-related items into a single bill, including Syria withdrawal and financial aid to Israel.

Members of the Senate Democratic caucus, including Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer of NY, came to support the strategy, which Van Hollen was pushing over the weekend. Those tactics were first proposed by Sen. Chris Van Hollen and Cory Booker, are committed to blocking the passage of any legislation before the government shutdown is ended.

"The Senate should vote on nothing else until we vote to reopen the government. Period", Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., tweeted on Monday. "This shutdown is squeezing the finances of so many Americans, including thousands of federal workers who live in Virginia".

The highlights of the actual legislative package up for debate Tuesday, which is being led by Florida GOP Sen.

Also weighing in on Tlaib's tweet was the American Jewish Committee.

"I haven't been sidelined", he said last week, according to CNN.

One of the main goals of establishing a state with Jewish sovereignty was to create a place for Jewish refugees to go in times of persecution, and to have a country to protect them.

The majority leader said the Democratic objections to negotiating funding for the president's requested wall at the border with Mexico amounted to a "partisan tantrum". "It's a political stunt, it always was", Connolly said.

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