Sen. Cotton on state of shutdown talks: “The general sense in the room is excitement that the Patriots won.”

Sen. Tom Cotton left a meeting in Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s office about the government shutdown with a smile on his face. It wasn’t a breakthrough on immigration policy, or an agreement with Democrats to open the government making him giddy.

As Congress wraps up a second day with the government shut down, amid a stalemate over the future of nearly 700,000 undocumented immigrants currently protected by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program — which the Trump administration is sunsetting by March 5 — Cotton was happy to give a report about football.

“The general sense in the room is excitement that the Patriots won,” Cotton told Vox about his meeting with McConnell.

On Sunday night, lawmakers seem to be as occupied with the NFL playoffs as they were with a looming early-morning vote in the Senate to open the government by Monday’s workday.

Amid tense shutdown negotiations, McConnell, passing a gaggle of male reporters on his way back to his office only said, “What’s the score of the game, boys?”

Republican Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA) went on NBC sporting an Eagles hat. Meanwhile, a congressional staffer rolled a large flatscreen TV into McConnell’s office. Through the window, reporters, anxiously awaiting news on a government spending deal, could make out the hazy outlines of a football field on the screen.


— Nash Jenkins (@pnashjenkins) January 22, 2018

Meanwhile, the outcome of tonight’s vote on the government shutdown is far from certain. On the table is a three-week short-term spending bill that would keep the government open until February 8. The bill would fund the Children’s Health Insurance Program and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ) Read More Here