On the third day of a partial government shutdown, the top congressional Democratic leaders used another stock market drop to blast President Donald Trump. The two sides traded barbs but there was no sign of progress toward a deal.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was off 653 points in a truncated trading day that ended at 1 p.m. Investors again were in a selling mood as a senior Democratic aide reported no progress in talks with the White House and a day after Trump announced he would dismiss Defense Secretary James Mattis over a month earlier than planned after he grew angry watching media coverage of his decision to oust the retired Marine Corps general.
“It’s Christmas Eve and President Trump is plunging the country into chaos. The stock market is tanking and the president is waging a personal war on the Federal Reserve – after he just fired the Secretary of Defense,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer said in a statement.
“Instead of bringing certainty into people’s lives, he’s continuing the Trump Shutdown just to please right-wing radio and TV hosts,” the duo added.
Earlier, Trump claimed in a Monday tweet Senate Democrats have not made an offer to counter the administration’s for $2.1 billion for a border barrier and $400 million for a border security account the opposition party has called a “slush fund.”
The president appeared to joke that he is “all alone” in the White House on the third day of a partial government shutdown. He was scheduled to meet with his top homeland security advisors at 2 p.m., and first lady Melania Trump returned to Washington from his South Florida resort to spend Christmas with her husband.
In another tweet the markets noticed, the President suggested the Federal Reserve cannot putt, using his own version of the golf saying that one “drives for show but putts for dough.” But he did not deliver a personal broadside on Chairman Jerome Powell or suggest, as some reporting indicates he has floated inside the West Wing, firing the Fed boss. Trump blames him for an economic slowdown and the ongoing market slump.
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