Politics is all about expectations; and as President Trump sat down last evening at the Resolute Desk expectations in Washington and across the country were running rampant.
For some they expected the president to declare there is a national emergency at the southern border, lock and load the military, ignore the will of Congress (and appropriation norms) and start laying those "Build The Wall"! That didn't happen.
For others, they expected Trump to claim there is a humanitarian and national security crisis (which he did) and that Democrats would see the error of their #resistance and give the president the $5 billion (which they did not).
For Trump, he expected to be any place else but behind that desk.
Despite everyone's expectations, the truth of the moment could not be avoided: there is no crisis at our borders (except the one he's creating), there are no terrorists overrunning those borders (ok, there were six in the first half of 2018), and the president accomplished the one thing he needed to do: say nothing new. And he didn't. After all, why should he when he's had surrogates, Sara Huckabee Sanders, and very friendly news outlets parroting tropes about "uncontrolled illegal migration" or "U.S. border officials detained nearly 4,000 known or suspected terrorists” last year.
But here'a another truth: federal workers are still not back at work, are not receiving a paycheck this week and will only see the circumstances grow more dire as Trump offhandedly remarks the shutdown could go on for "months" or 'years". That's not a negotiating position, that's immoral.