Democrats Threaten To Shut Down the Federal Government Over Russia Investigation

Senate Foreign Relations Committee member Chris Coons, D-Del., talks on a phone as he leaves briefing on the AdministrationÂ’s response to the Syrian conflict, in a closed session in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2015. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Apparently the Democrats are not only dead set on getting their investigation, they are intent on getting their outcome. Even if it comes to shutting down the government.

Democratic Sen. Chris Coons said that threatening to shut down the government is the “only card” Democrats have in negotiations with the Republican majority.

The Delaware senator was asked Monday on WHYY radio what Democrats could do to force the hand of Republicans who may be hesitant to investigate questions surrounding the Trump administration and Russia.

“Sen. (Chuck) Schumer, who’s our Minority Leader, who’s the leader of the Democratic caucus, is regularly negotiating with Majority Leader McConnell over what we are willing to do or not do to shut down the government or shut down the Senate,” Coons said. “We’ve had as you saw, a number of fairly bitter fights over confirmation.”

If this is a threat, I have to admit that I’m more than a little unclear on how it works. Or why it would give the Republicans an incentive to cave on Democrat demands that they be allowed to act like they are the majority party.

For a threat to be effective, it has to be credible. Does anyone believe the Democrats have the ability to shut down the government with a minority in both House and Senate? Any rule they wish to use can be changed by majority vote. Moving past the practicality, does anyone believe the Democrats will shut down the government and inconvenience their primary voting blocs: government employees and dependents? Not only must the threat be credible, someone has to care. If you threaten to set your own car on fire if I don’t give you money, your threat is credible but I don’t care. This is basically what happened during the Rodney King riots.

Coons is playing to his base and is simply talking out of his butt. The real danger is Burr, he’s a putz who may very well get rolled if he’s not kept on the straight and narrow by his caucus.