Connecticut’s U.S. senators both voted against the Republican-backed measure to reopen the government, Thursday.
That bill had the full support of the White House because it contained full funding for President Donald Trump’s proposed $5.5 billion wall along the southern border.
But, the Democratic proposal also failed to achieve 60 votes, leaving the government shutdown in place.
“From the very beginning this was only going to end one way, Republicans dropping all of these ridiculous demands and opening the government,” said Sen. Chris Murphy, one Connecticut’s two Democrats in the U.S. Senate. “Democrats have no conditions, no demands. All we want is for the government to be open.”
The Democratic proposal amounted to a short-term, two week proposal to open the government immediately, but it did not include funding for the wall.
Murphy said it’s Republicans who need to compromise because when they had the chance to approve the wall on their own they were unable to.
“Donald Trump had Republican control of the House and the Senate for two years. A Republican House and a Republican Senate would not give him money for his wall because Republicans knew it was a waste of taxpayers’ dollars,” Murphy said.
The Democratic proposal did amass more votes than the GOP proposal, with six Republicans crossing party lines to cast votes to reopen the government without funding the wall.
Because of that level of bipartisan support, only West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin voted with the Republicans on their measure, Sen. Richard Blumenthal says the path to compromise is with the Democrats’ version.
“There was some glimmer of hope with this vote,” Blumenthal said. “Clearly, some of my Republican colleagues and hopefully an increasing number are seeing the pain caused by this Trump shutdown and foreseeing the harm being done to our entire economy.”
Hartford Congressman John Larson says he expects the House to take up another spending measure to open the government, but also criticized the president for using national security as the reason for the wall, when the shutdown threatens the safety of Americans flying every day the shutdown persists.
Rep. Larson said, "It's gotten insane to think that people where public safety is involved, you would say for security reasons you're going to shut down the government. Now how does that make any sense?"