US Senate Democrats Block Bill on New Sanctions Against Syria Over Shutdown

Clay Curtis
January 10, 2019

Trump argued Tuesday night that the wall was needed to resolve what he called a security and humanitarian "crisis".

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

Senate Republicans, of course, don't want to be forced to vote to keep the federal government closed, and would prefer simply to hide behind Trump. But Trump has said he will not sign the measure, and McConnell has repeatedly said the Senate won't advance legislation the president won't support.

PolitiFact found the claim partially true when White House budget director Mick Mulvaney used it in 2016.

McConnell also blamed the 18-day partial government shutdown on "Democrats' refusal to negotiate" because of "partisan spite for the president".

House Democrats last week passed legislation that would reopen the government but deny President Donald Trump any of the money he is demanding for a new wall along the U.S. -Mexico border. It's not about which bill we're voting on.

On Friday, the House will vote on the Transportation appropriations bill.

"Currently, almost twice as many liberal Democrats say they sympathize more with the Palestinians than with Israel (35% vs. 19%)". We offered every senator an opportunity to clarify his or her personal position on BDS. "But it's time now for the president and his administration to take the full import of the consequences of his actions".

Murkowski disagrees, and says she wants the government re-opened.

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Pence also will meet with Senate Republicans on Wednesday.

Rep. Tom Graves, Georgia Republican, said the move was just another political stunt on the part of Democrats. "We'll just continue educating members".

The bill called Strengthening America's Security in the Middle East Act seeks to target Syria and its allies - Russian Federation and Iran - with new sanctions as well as to boost USA security cooperation with Israel and Jordan.

He and several other senators support the Israel-related legislation on its merits, and it is expected to pass once the shutdown ends.

In discussing the movement supported by part of their base, Feinstein and Cardin's offices focused on the First Amendment, as did Sen. "It's about the fact that McConnell has the power to bring up the bipartisan House-passed bills today and end this shutdown and we need to make that the first order of business", Van Hollen tweeted.

This isn't about reopening the government for Democrats. "Period", Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., tweeted on Monday.

Republican Sen. Susan Collins of ME was spotted on Wednesday huddling with fellow Republican Sens. Mark Warner, California Sen. Cory Booker, Oregon Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) were vocal about their disdain for the measure via Twitter, saying it punishes people for using their "constitutional right". Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., and Thomas Carper, D-Del. Democrats must block consideration of any bills that don't reopen the government.

But at the White House, Trump said the federal workers are "terrific patriots" who will eventually get paid. "It's a political stunt, it always was", Connolly said.

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