Blog ››› ››› MATT GERTZ
President Donald Trump’s favorite cable news show wants its viewers to know that he is not the one to blame for the government shutdown that began last night after White House chief of staff John Kelly helped shoot down a potential deal between Trump and Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY). But Trump himself repeatedly argued on the network in the past that the president bears responsibility for government shutdowns.
Discussing the shutdown on this morning’s edition of Fox & Friends Weekend, co-host Pete Hegseth, a committed shill for the president, said that voters see “the utter dysfunction of the swamp, and they say, ‘that’s not what Trump wants, but that’s what Mitch McConnell and Chuck Schumer and others have been used to for decades. Stop the insanity and actually do something!’”
Co-host Rachel Campos-Duffy (who is married to Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI)) chimed in, “While the Democrats may be getting blamed in the headlines, I do think in the end, everybody looks bad.” “That’s true,” Hegseth agreed, “I think, except for the president.” Campos-Duffy replied, “He brought Schumer in, he tried to make the deal happen.”
The Fox shutdown spin stands in stark contrast to how Trump has discussed the issue on the network before he became president. Trump specifically said that the president is the one responsible for averting a shutdown in a series of Fox appearances around the time of the 2013 government shutdown, as Media Matters’ John Whitehouse pointed out this morning:
Trump, of course, has since changed his tune, blaming Democrats both before and after the shutdown went into effect, even as his own shifting negotiating position makes deal-making dramatically more complex because he can’t be trusted to stick to bargains.
In fact, Trump was live-tweeting this Fox & Friends Saturday segment and others all morning, parroting the Fox co-hosts’ attacks on Democrats over the shutdown in real time: