Tim Pearce, DCNF
Democratic lawmakers joined federal union workers to protest and take part in the “Rally to End the Trump Shutdown” outside the White House on Thursday.
Union workers representing the National Air Traffic Controllers, American Federation of Government Employees and AFL-CIO, among other labor groups, marched from the AFL-CIO headquarters in Washington, D.C., to the White House in protest over the shutdown.
Several Democratic lawmakers attended and spoke at the event, billed as the “Rally to End the Trump Shutdown.” Democratic Sens. Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin of Maryland and Democratic Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia gave speeches in support of the protesters, calling on President Donald Trump “stop holding America hostage to [his] politics.”
“This shutdown is outrageous, it’s dangerous, and it has to end now,” Cardin told a crowd of assembled protesters.
— Senator Ben Cardin (@SenatorCardin) January 10, 2019
In front of the @AFLCIO, I stood in solidarity with with furloughed federal workers, unions, and grassroots organizations. The @SenateGOP should not be contracting out their constitutional responsibilities to Trump. Last time I checked, we are a separate branch of government. pic.twitter.com/jXRXRJWuNH
— Chris Van Hollen (@ChrisVanHollen) January 10, 2019
— Transp. Trades Dept. (@TTDAFLCIO) January 10, 2019
The first missed payday for federal workers affected by the shutdown is scheduled for Friday.
Congressional Democrats are fighting to keep Trump from approving any physical barrier to be built along the southern border to curb illegal immigration. The federal government went into a partial shutdown at midnight Dec. 22 after Trump vetoed a spending bill that did not include border wall funding.
The federal shutdown has continued for nearly three weeks as Democrats continue to hold out on partially funding border wall construction. Trump has asked for over $5 billion, much less than the $21.6 billion the Department of Homeland Security estimated a border wall would cost in 2017.