It figures that the thing Donald Trump has stayed firm on would be keeping the government shut down and 800,000 federal workers without paychecks. But while Trump has, for the most part, stuck to his belief that he is winning or will win, the New York Times reports that there are moments when reality sets in:

“We are getting crushed!” Mr. Trump told his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, after watching some recent coverage of the shutdown, according to one person familiar with the conversation. “Why can’t we get a deal?”

You can’t get a deal because you’re not looking for a deal; you’re demanding total capitulation. You’ve been offered a deal—re-opening the government for a short time while border negotiations happen—and rejected it, repeatedly. “Most of his top aides would like him to find a way out,” according to Maggie Haberman and Annie Karni. But apparently the aides who don’t want a way out (coughStephenMillercough) are carrying the day with Trump. After all, it’s rarely a losing proposition to cater to Trump’s meanest and stupidest instincts.


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