Sen. Tom Cotton (R., Ark.) on Tuesday called out Democratic senators for attacking White House staffers, saying they should focus on negotiating an immigration bill.
Cotton joined “Fox and Friends” where he commented on the government reopening after a three-day shutdown. The shutdown kicked off Friday after Senate Democrats forced a 60-vote majority to pass a short-term government funding measure. All but five Democrats subsequently voted against the measure, many arguing any funding measure should include a permanent fix for recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. While Democrats attempted to place blame on Republicans for the shutdown, the media widely acknowledged Democrats role in initiating the shutdown, and many Republicans called it a “Schumer shutdown” after Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.).
Following criticism from some Democrats about the president’s role in DACA negotiations, co-host Brian Kilmeade asked Cotton about the “reality” of the president’s involvement. Kilmeade pointed out that Schumer has claimed the president wasn’t as involved as he should have been over the weekend, and others have argued the president’s position has altered as a result of influence from aides.
“Well, first, the president’s position has not shifted, and it has not been hidden. The president’s position has been clear all along. What Senator Schumer and Senator Durbin mean when they say it’s shifted or that he hasn’t revealed it, is that they don’t like his position,” Cotton said.
“And second, all these senators are running around attacking White House staffers. It’s really beneath the dignity of a senator,” Cotton added. “Advisors advise, presidents decide. And to say anything else is to impugn the president.”
Cotton also commented on the government shutdown as a whole, saying that the American people “clearly saw that the Senate Democrats shut down our government” for seeking amnesty for DACA recipients without comprehensive reform, including border security.
“The American people very clearly saw that the Senate Democrats shut down our government because they didn’t get the kind of amnesty with no strings attached for illegal immigrants that they wanted,” Cotton said.
He added that Congress can now get back to what it should be doing: negotiating a “generous, but responsible immigration bill.”
“I’m glad that it only lasted three days— that they came to their senses. The government can go back to work serving the American people,” Cotton said. “And we can get on with the serious business of negotiating a generous, but responsible immigration bill.”
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