- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 25, 2018

Rep. Tim Ryan said Thursday that Democrats lost a lot of ground in the negotiations on Dreamers after the government shutdown.

“I think we went in as a party without a real plan, without a real strategy of how we were going to get out, or what the end game was. We lost before we even started,” Mr. Ryan, Ohio Democrat, said on MSNBC.

He added that Democrats focused too much on the Dreamers — those brought to the U.S. illegally as children — and didn’t have a unified list of demands for President Trump and Republicans. He said Democrats needed to show they were also fighting for blue-collar workers and need to make sure both groups feel represented in the party.

“I don’t think we built a big enough coalition,” he said.

Notably, Mr. Ryan did vote against the continuing resolution that would have funded the government, despite seeing the shutdown as a flawed strategy, but he has no regrets about his decision, according to his office.

Mr. Ryan added that he doesn’t trust the president and doesn’t believe him when he says he’ll consider a pathway for citizenship for Dreamers, or participants in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. The Ohio Democrat said the lack of trust has made it harder for Democrats to negotiate.

“You can’t function as a democracy without some level of trust,” he said.

“At the end of the day, your word has to mean something,” Mr. Ryan added.

Democrats refused to support a continuing resolution last week after Mr. Trump failed to sign the bipartisan immigration bill, which included protections for Dreamers. The government shut down for three days before enough Democrats supported the bill for it to pass.

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