CNN host Anderson Cooper ripped into President Trump on Friday, arguing that the president is telling federal employees who are working without pay amid the partial government shutdown to “let them eat wall.”
Cooper blasted Trump after the president repeated his claim that federal workers have personally told him they support his demands for funding for a U.S.–Mexico border wall in order to end the ongoing shutdown.
“A lot of people that you think are upset and certainly they’re not thrilled, but they say, ‘Sir, do the right thing, we need border security,’ and these are people who are not getting paid,” Trump claimed on Friday.
“The president of the United States, who is a billionaire, says the 800,000 people who aren’t getting paid because of the government shutdown are okay with that,” Cooper said. “‘Just ask them,’ he says. He also says he thinks their landlords will be okay with them not paying the rent.”
“Later in the program, you will meet some people who are not getting paid right now,” he continued. “They have bills to pay, credit cards, groceries as well. Health insurance, mortgage payments, the rent. The president has words for them, too. ‘Let them eat wall.’”
“‘Just words?’ President Trump?” asks @andersoncooper.
The President has these words for federal employees who have bills to pay, credit card bills, groceries, health insurance, mortgage payments… the rent: Let them eat wall. #KeepingThemHonest pic.twitter.com/EyuttnwIUQ
— Anderson Cooper 360° (@AC360) January 5, 2019
The Washington Post reported on Friday that hundreds of senior officials appointed by Trump, including Cabinet officials, top administrators, and even the vice president, are poised to receive their annual raises of close to $10,000 a year.
Trump also threatened to keep the government closed for months or even years until Congress meets his demand for billions of dollars in funding for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border that he promised to get Mexico to pay for.
Trump attacked federal employees on Twitter on Saturday morning, saying he doesn’t “care that most of the workers are not getting paid” since he believes they are Democrats.