Shutdown back down: President Donald Trump has agreed to end the longest US government shutdown in history

January 26, 2019
President Donald Trump Source Associated Press | Report Focus News
President Donald Trump Source: Associated Press

US President Donald Trump faced criticism from disappointed supporters last night as he announced a deal which would allow government employees back to work.

A 35-day impasse over funding for Trump’s much-touted wall to run across the southern border with Mexico.

The $5.7bn barrier was a mainstay of Trump’s 2016 election campaign, and backing down was seen as a sign of weakness by several conservative commentators.

Right-wing pundit Ann Coulter, a long-time supporter of the president, tweeted: “Good news for George Herbert Walker Bush: As of today, he is no longer the biggest wimp ever to serve as President of the United States.”

Coulter later told HBO’s Bill Maher: “I’m telling you how to get Trump: He promised something for 18 months and he lied about it. That’s how you get Trump – it’s not this Russia nonsense.”

However, for a president already dealing with crises on several fronts, the government shutdown has dented his re-election hopes.

His already slim 40 per cent approval ratings dropped as low as the mid-30s during the shutdown as American federal employees went without two paychecks.

The president has also hinted that this will not be the last we hear of the wall, with speculation growing he could declare a national emergency over illegal immigration.

The government funding plan will keep federal employees at work — avoiding damaging results such as cuts to law enforcement and delayed flights — until 15 February.

“Trump is a broken man,” said conservative commentator Mike Cernovich, adding the president had been outmaneuvered by speaker of the house Nancy Pelosi, one of the country’s most senior Democrats.