(NationalSentinel) Politics:Â Talk show behemoth Rush Limbaugh grilled Vice President Mike Pence during an appearance on his show Tuesday, lamenting the fact that despite GOP majorities in Congress and a Republican president in the White House, the party seems incapable of coalescing around legislation its members pledged to pass.
Limbaugh rarely has guests on his program but a $1.2 trillion budget deal this week that does not address most of President Donald J. Trump’s legislative agenda and policy priorities prompted him to invite Pence on the air.
The theme of the exchange boiled down to one question: â€œIf this is what happens, Mr. Vice President, why vote Republican?â€ theÂ Washington Times reported.
â€œWhat is the point of voting Republican if the Democrats are gonna continue to win practically 95 percent of their objectives, such as in this last budget deal?â€Â Limbaugh asked.
For his part, Pence defended the president and blamed the process of passing tough legislation – a claim toÂ which Pence, a former U.S. congressman, has credibility.
â€œLook, youâ€™ve had Washington, D.C., that has been, you know, paralyzed by gridlock and partisan infighting for many years, and in this new president you have someone who was able to bring people together and make a $21 billion increase in defense spending at a time of great challenge for Americaâ€™s interests around the world,â€ the VPÂ replied.
However, that explanation did not satisfy the host.
â€œIf Iâ€™m the Democrats, $21 billion, 15 billion for defense that was not originally authorized, thatâ€™s a small price to pay for continuing to fund refugee resettlement, continuing to fund Planned Parenthood, continuing to fund sanctuary cities, continuing to fund the EPA, and not build the wall. The Democrats clearly think this is a big win, and theyâ€™re confident they can block Trumpâ€™s agenda after this spending bill for the rest of Trumpâ€™s term. There isnâ€™t anything of the presidentâ€™s agenda in this budget, and people are beginning to ask, whenâ€™s that gonna happen? If youâ€™re gonna shut it down in September, why not now?” he said, referencing Trump’s tweet yesterday saying he’d be in favor of a government shutdown at the end of the fiscal year – when the next budget is due – if he did not get funding for his priorities.
Pence countered that Trump’s “No. 1 priority” is rebuilding the military.
“Rush, let me be real clear. The number one priority of President Trump is to rebuild our military, to restore the arsenal of democracy. And I gotta tell you, to get Democrats in Washington, D.C., to agree to a $21 billion increase in a short-term budget bill â€” and, you know, the presidentâ€™s calling for the largest increase in military spending since the Reagan administration in the upcoming budget, I think is no small â€” itâ€™s no small accomplishment,” said Pence.
“Also, this bill includes the largest increase in border security funding in 10 years, with enough, as the president said to make a down payment on a border wall. Weâ€™re replacing ineffective and failing fencing and wall with an unbreakable barrier. Weâ€™re beginning to build the wall already, and look at the statistics, Rush. Illegal immigration, border crossings, are down more than 60 percent…”
Read the entire interview here.