Steve Bannon has predicted that President Trump will shut down the government if he doesn’t get full funding for one of his signature projects—the border wall with Mexico.
“The wall is central. The wall is not just totemic,” the former White House chief strategist said during an interview with CNN’s Fareed Zakaria. “The wall is absolutely central to his program.”
“I believe that what [Trump’s] going to do is, as we come up on September 30, if that appropriations bill does not include spending to fully build his wall — not some $1.6 billion for prototypes, I mean to build the southern wall — I believe he will shut down the government,” Bannon continued. “I believe the government will actually shut down in the run-up to the [midterm] election.”
In fact, the president alluded to a similar outcome in Cleveland last month when he talked about the importance of the wall, saying, “We may have to close up our country to get this straight.”
His comments reflect a renewed fight over funding for the project which he has failed to secure so far.
Trump has since ratcheted up the rhetoric, telling an audience in Nashville on Tuesday, “In the end, Mexico is going to pay for the wall. They do absolutely nothing to stop people from going through Mexico, from Honduras and all these other countries…They do nothing to help us.”
Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto responded quickly with a refusal to fund the project.
Related: Wall prototypes