Hurrah! Shutdown is giving conservative Trump advisers what they've long wanted: A smaller government
The Washington Post reports:
President Trump has cast the shuttering of federal agencies as a standoff over his plan to build a wall on the southern border. But for many White House aides and allies, the partial shutdown is advancing another long-standing priority: constraining the government.
Prominent advisers to the president have forged their political careers in relentless pursuit of a lean federal budget and a reined-in bureaucracy. As a result, they have shown a high tolerance for keeping large swaths of the government dark, services offline and 800,000 federal workers without pay, with the shutdown having entered an unprecedented fourth week..............
.....................Reps. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) and Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) - leaders of the Freedom Caucus and the president's top allies in the House - have urged Trump to stay the course. They have built national profiles with calls to slash federal spending - not as much on strengthening border security.
The shutdown is "a means to an end for something they have long pursued, which is limiting the size and scope and role of government," former House GOP staffer Kurt Bardella said of the conservative Freedom Caucus. Bardella became a Democrat in 2017.
"These are small-government guys, not wall guys," one former White House official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private exchanges, said of Meadows and Jordan.
Conservatives have for decades questioned the size and effectiveness of the federal bureaucracy. The shutdown has in some ways underscored their view that government can function with fewer employees.............