President Donald Trump believes responsibility for a government shutdown goes straight to the top, right to the president’s office. At least that’s what he said on Fox News — when he was talking about Barack Obama in 2013.
Trump revealed his views when he was asked on “Fox & Friends” about a pending government shutdown which occurred over a funding battle in October that year.
“Boardroom here,” said host Elisabeth Hasselbeck, referring to Trump’s reality TV show “The Apprentice,” in which he summarily fired people. “Who’s getting fired? Who’s going to bear the brunt of the responsibility if indeed there is a government shutdown?” she asked Trump, who had called in to the program.
“If you say who gets fired it always has to be the top,” Trump responded. “Problems start from the top and they have to get solved from the top. And the president’s the leader. He’s got to get everyone in a room and he’s gotta lead. But he doesn’t do that,” Trump added, referring to Obama.
“And that’s why you have this horrible situation going on in Washington. It’s a very, very bad thing and it’s very embarrassing worldwide.”
He also noted that when people look back on a shutdown in history, they’re “going to be talking about ... who the president was at that time. They’re not going to be talking about who was the head of the House, the head of the Senate, who’s running things in Washington.”
Several federal departments and agencies were shut down Friday at midnight as funding lapsed after Trump switched his position on signing a temporary funding bill and refused instead to support any measure that didn’t include some $5 billion for his border wall. The House and Senate have adjourned for the holidays and members likely will not be meeting in anyone’s office until at least Thursday.
Trump, who had said earlier this month that he would be “proud” to shut down the government for “border security” is now calling it a “Democrat shutdown.”
Listen to Trump’s views about a president’s responsibility for a shutdown in the clip above.
He also told Larry King in a 2013 interview that the U.S. was “being scoffed at and laughed at” because of the shutdown. “It’s a mess,” he said. See that video right here: