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Kellyanne Conway seems confused about how bipartisanship works

A giant leap in logic, even by Conway's standards.

Kellyanne Conway on Fox News on Wednesday.
Kellyanne Conway on Fox News on Wednesday. CREDIT: Fox and Friends screenshot

Kellyanne Conway, the counselor to President Donald Trump, bizarrely claimed during a Fox and Friends appearance on Wednesday that bipartisan support for criminal justice reform obligates Democratic lawmakers to support funding Trump’s unpopular border wall.

Conway applauded Tuesday’s 87 to 12 vote in the Senate in favor of a criminal justice reform bill. Thirty-eight Republicans joined all 49 members of the Senate Democratic Caucus to pass the bill.

Then things got confusing, as she tried to argue without evidence that it proved Democrats also secretly back spending billions in taxpayer dollars on Trump’s wall.

After calling the vote a “big win for the president,” who backs the legislation, and for “those who have paid their debt to society and are ready to reentry,” Conway likened it the October enactment of bipartisan opioids legislation

I think some of the same equity that we had earlier this year when every single Democrat who voted in the House and every single Democrat who voted in the Senate came together and put on the president’s desk historic opioid and drug legislation. So, when people want to come together on behalf of the American people they do it through criminal justice reform or through opioid legislation,” she noted.

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The admission that the opioid bill was bipartisan is a shift from Trump’s own comments in October, when he falsely claimed that the bill had passed with “very little Democrat support.”

But Conway then attempted to pivot to an altogether unrelated topic: Trump’s insistence that the American people pay billions of dollars for a border wall that he repeatedly promised would be funded entirely by Mexico.

“That’s why the Democrats are completely disingenuous when they walk away from border security. This also is for the country. I don’t know why they are playing politics with something like that,” she opined — suggesting that because Democrats voted for two pieces of bipartisan legislation that they agreed with, they could not possibly be against other legislation that they and the American people strongly oppose. 

Trump has repeatedly threatened to shut down much of the federal government this month if Congress does not give him billions of dollars for his wall. Last week he bragged that he would be “proud to shut down the government for border security” and promised not to blame the Democratic minority in Congress if that happens.

When host Brian Kilmeade suggested that the opposition to the wall is only because Democrats “don’t want to give the president a win,” Conway agreed. “That’s a shame. As we have seen with criminal justice reform, it’s a win for Americans.” 

In other words, she thinks Democrats voted for two big “wins” for Trump, but are opposing bankrolling a wall because it would be a “win’ for Trump, which proves that they couldn’t possibly really oppose the wall. It remains to be seen whether Congressional Democrats will drop their opposition in light of this new reasoning.