The threat of a partial government shutdown looms over Capitol Hill as the deadline to pass a spending bill by December 21 approaches. President Donald Trump has demanded that $5 billion be included in the final spending package for the southern border wall, which Democrats refuse to accept. Feeling the pressure of a Democratic-controlled House in January, Trump is threatening to shut down the government if he does not receive the funding -- and some at Fox are encouraging him.
Tomi Lahren, host of Fox Nation’s First Thoughts, expressed strong support for a government shutdown, telling Trump to “shut it down” because “the promise of a big, beautiful border wall” was at the “top of [her] list” when voting for Trump. She doubled down on her support by saying, “A good old-fashioned government shutdown spanking might be exactly what our politicians need.”
Lisa Boothe, a panelist on Fox News’ Outnumbered, claimed that she is “perfectly fine with shutting the government down” because “it’s a partial shutdown” and “people will forget about this by 2020,” so it will not “impact Republicans politically.” Some of her fellow panelists also suggested that a government shutdown would be a good idea.
Fox host Laura Ingraham expressed support for Trump's proposed government shutdown on her radio show, saying that if he doesn’t “get this wall built," then "we’ve lost the country anyway.”
On Fox Business' Lou Dobbs Tonight, Republican strategist Ed Rollins justified a government shutdown on Fox Business’ Lou Dobbs Tonight, saying, “The bottom line is you’re not shutting the whole government down. You’re only shutting a part of it down.” He also said that Trump needs to show that he means “serious business” and that he “needs this to hold his base.”
Fox News contributor Mike Huckabee said on Fox & Friends that Trump should shut the government down, justifying it by saying, “The terrible thing is to let the Democrats bully this president who was elected by the people of this nation.”
Fox News contributor Jason Chaffetz argued that in a shutdown fight, “the president is on the winning side.”
On America's Newsroom, Republican political consultant and Fox News regular Brad Blakeman said that he supported Trump’s rhetoric on shutting down the government, arguing, “The president’s got to use leverage.”
Ned Ryun, founder and CEO of American Majority, argued on Fox & Friends that Trump “should shut down government because then we can have a conversation about what size government do we really want.”
On his daily radio show, Fox host Sean Hannity downplayed the impact of a government shutdown, saying that “essential services all continue” and characterizing a shutdown as a “free vacation” for bureaucrats.
Fox host Lou Dobbs asked his guest “who’s going to notice” a government shutdown, before falsely claiming that “the principal beneficiaries [of government programs] seem to be the estimated 22 to 30 million illegal immigrants in this country.”
On her Fox show, The Ingraham Angle, Ingraham also championed Trump’s decision to potentially shut down the government, claiming that a shutdown would “absolutely” yield positive results for Trump. Ingraham also claimed that the 2013 government shutdown “didn’t hurt the Republicans at all” and that Trump has “got to get that wall built.”
Update (12/12/18): This piece has been updated with additional examples.