Sen. Kennedy says shutdown likely, but would be ‘a pox on all of our houses’

Posted at 8:09 AM, Dec 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-12 10:09:56-05

Republican Sen. John Kennedy said Wednesday that he thinks there will be a partial government shutdown, but that it would be “a pox on all of our houses.”

A partial government shutdown is potentially days away, as congressional Democrats and President Donald Trump spar over his demand for $5 billion in border wall funding. Two existing bipartisan packages would either provide $1.6 billion in border security funding or continue the current $1.3 billion border plan for two months until a permanent deal is reached.

“I think we’re going to have a shutdown,” Kennedy told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on “New Day.”

“President Trump does not look to me like he was bluffing,” he said, later adding, “I don’t think (likely incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi) is going to agree to anything because she’s worried about her speakership.”

When asked whether blame for a shutdown would fall on the President or Congress, Kennedy replied, “As far as I’m concerned, if it’s shut down, it’s a pox on all of our houses.”

But the Louisiana senator stressed that he was “absolutely not” comfortable with a shutdown.

“I don’t know politically who’s going to win or lose this, I do know that too many people are preoccupied with politics of it. We ought to try to figure a way out of this,” Kennedy added.

Kennedy also downplayed Tuesday’s boisterous televised meeting between Trump, Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

“I didn’t think it was spectacle. I appreciated the transparency,” Kennedy said. “I’ve been in meetings like that before — that meeting was pretty tame compared to some of the lively discussions we have.”