Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., argued Monday that Republican demands in the latest spending showdown show they are willing and ready to have the government partially shut down.
In an op-ed for the Washington Post, Sanders hinted that he and Democrats wouldn't agree to those demands, which could lead to a partial government shutdown. But he said it's up to Republicans to find a deal Democrats can support.
"I do not know why President Trump and the Republican Party — which controls the White House, the Senate and the House — are so willing to shut down the government," Sanders wrote in the Washington Post. "Maybe they think it will be good for them politically."
Sanders wrote that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., "ratcheted up threats of a government shutdown" by insisting on a bigger boost for defense spending. Sanders and most Democrats have said domestic spending should get a similar boost, and have warned they wouldn't agree to a deal that gets away from "parity."
He also argued that Trump "added even more fuel to the fire" by saying he would protect Dreamers only in return for a border wall, which is another Trump priority Democrats oppose.
Democrats have been pushing the GOP to put together a package to help Dreamers and keep the government open, but Republicans have said they want to split the two issues.
On Monday, Republicans indicated that the lack of agreement on either spending or immigration might mean another short-term spending bill.