Federal employees are in support of a border wall and want the White House to hold out during the shutdown to ensure wall funding, according to President Donald Trump.
“Well, I think they understand what’s happening. They want border security. The people of this country want border security. It’s not a question of me. I’d rather not be doing shutdowns,” Trump told reporters at the White House Dec. 25.
He added that many federal workers “said to me and communicated, ‘Stay out until you get the funding for the wall.’ These federal workers want the wall. The only one that doesn’t want the wall are the Democrats, because they don’t mind open borders.”
But federal employee unions have decried the shutdown as damaging to hundreds of federal workers and stated that what their members really want is to go back to work.
Twitter users also refuted Trump’s claims that feds support the shutdown for a border wall, and the hashtag #Shutdownstories began trending as feds and others impacted took to social media to share how the government shutdown was negatively impacting them:
Broke my lease to accept new fed job for which I have to attend 7 months of training in another state. Training canceled with shutdown. Homeless. Can’t afford short(?)-term housing/have to work full-time for no pay/returning Xmas presents #ShutdownStories— Daniel (@Ancient_Scout) December 25, 2018
I'm a contracted employee for the federal government and the difference is that there is no chance of compensation for the shutdown days for me and others in my position. #ShutdownStories— NPSF (@Newstent1) December 25, 2018
I'm a federal worker. I know hundreds of federal workers. None of them feel the government should shut down until Trump gets funding for his stupid wall. A wall is a backward-thinking solution for an immigration system which needs an overhaul. Trump is just plain lying here. https://t.co/Ug6DzDQc80— Cornelia (@PaladinCornelia) December 25, 2018
Jessie Bur covers federal IT and management.