- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 26, 2019

President Trump triggered a range of responses from his conservative media supporters Friday for abandoning his latest demand that Congress approve funding for a wall to be built on the Mexican border.

Several prominent right-wing media personalities, pundits and websites panned the president for reaching a short-term deal to reopen the federal government without securing the $5.7 billion in funding he sought for his proposed border wall – a contentious request at the center of the unprecedented 35-day partial shutdown ended by the agreement.

“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,” columnist Ann Coulter wrote on Twitter.

Lou Dobbs, a Fox Business Network host, said Mr. Trump was “rolled” by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat.

“She has just whipped the president of the United States,” Mr. Dobbs said Friday night. “It will be perceived as such on every television monitor and screen in the country and to deny it is to escape from reality.”



“I’m happy federal workers will be paid but @realDonaldTrump just allowed Nancy to walk all over him,” Fox Nation host Tomi Lahren wrote on Twitter. “It’s President Trump, not President Pelosi. Act like it. #BuildThatWall.”

The Daily Caller and The Gateway Pundit both ran stories headlined “TRUMP CAVES,” and a Breitbart News article declared: “The White House finally caved to Democrats demands, despite Trump’s repeated assertions this week that he would not do so.”

Not all of Mr. Trump’s conservative boosters were convinced he caved, however, and noted that the president threatened to unilaterally take executive action if Congress cannot find a way to fund his proposed border wall before the continuing resolution he signed Friday expires February 15.

“Anyone out there thinking President Trump caved today, you don’t know the Donald Trump I know,” Fox News host Sean Hannity said during his Friday night program. “He right now holds all the cards — he will secure the border one way or another.”

“This is for three weeks,” echoed Sebastian Gorka, a Fox analyst previously employed by the Trump administration. “As far as I’m concerned, this is a masterstroke,” he said on Mr. Dobbs’ program.

Others conservative commentators seemed less certain about the concession’s outcome, meanwhile.

“Trump lost the battle so he’s got to win the war. He’s got to get something out of an emergency declaration and if he doesn’t get something done there he has to flip the House in 2020,” said Fox News personality Jesse Waters.

“If the president goes for amnesty, I’m out. I will be a critic,” radio host Mark Levin said Friday. “But if the president is fighting to secure the wall, I’m prepared to wait three weeks and see what happens.”

Mr. Trump campaigned on building a wall at the Mexican border, but Congress has refused to allocate the billions of dollars he has requested for its construction.

He subsequently refused to sign a bill funding the federal government unless it accounted for his requested, causing hundreds of thousands of federal employees to be furloughed or forced to work without pay for more than a month prior to reaching Friday’s short-term deal.

“I wish people would read or listen to my words on the Border Wall. This was in no way a concession. It was taking care of millions of people who were getting badly hurt by the Shutdown with the understanding that in 21 days, if no deal is done, it’s off to the races!” Mr. Trump tweeted Saturday.

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