U.S. Rep. Mark Pocan, D-Town of Vermont, said he’s not sure how long the partial government shutdown — now in its fourth week — might go on, or how it will end.
“Your guess is as good as mine when we watch what this president might do,” Pocan said in an interview that aired Sunday on “UpFront with Mike Gousha,” produced in partnership with WisPolitics.com.
President Trump and congressional Democrats are at odds over Trump’s request for $5.7 billion for a wall along the border with Mexico. Trump promised a wall during his campaign and also said repeatedly that Mexico would pay for it.
Before Democrats won control of the House, Pocan said Republicans also refused to give Trump money for the wall.
“Even Republicans in their heart of hearts know this is a bad idea. It’s expensive, it’s not necessary, and it hurts our image around the world,” Pocan said.
Pocan said there was “no reason” to shut down government over the wall funding fight.
“We’re just trying to find a way to get government to reopen, to be adults, and then we’ll continue to talk about the wall. But again there’s no reason to have a wall,” he said.
“There’s so many other solutions that aren’t 11th century solutions that would work, using technology and other things, that we’re willing to put money into. But it really would be a waste of money to put it into a wall,” Pocan said.
U.S. Rep. Glenn Grothman, R-Glenbeulah, also appeared on the program to offer the House GOP viewpoint.
“He’s been very patient,” Grothman said about Trump. “He’s been president for over two years now. It was his number one promise.
“Five billion dollars is a lot of money. But that’s something like one-seventh of what we spend every year say, on foreign aid. It’s something like one-seventeenth of the increase in defense spending that we do on an annual basis since he’s been president. So I don’t think that’s too much to ask for, and it shouldn’t be that controversial. You’ve got to remember, 10, 11 years ago Hillary Clinton, Chuck Schumer, Joe Biden all voted for a wall, so it was a bipartisan thing a while back,” Grothman said.
See more from the show: https://www.wisn.com/upfront