Gary Cohn criticizes the shutdown: 'Completely wrong'

Gary Cohn criticizes the shutdown: 'Completely wrong'
© Greg Nash

President TrumpDonald John TrumpForget the spin: Five unrefuted Mueller Report revelations Lara Trump: Merkel admitting migrants 'one of the worst things that ever happened to Germany' Financial satisfaction hits record high: survey MORE's former chief economic adviser says he doesn't understand the White House's strategy for the ongoing partial government shutdown.

Gary CohnGary David CohnTrump frustrated with aides who talked to Mueller Hillicon Valley: White House rejects Dem request for AT&T merger docs | Apple, Qualcomm end massive court fight | Ecuador says it faced 40M cyberattacks after Assange arrest | SpaceX wins NASA contract to fly craft into asteroid White House rejects House Dems' request for documents on AT&T-Time Warner merger MORE told the Boston Globe on Thursday that the shutdown, which began last month, is "completely wrong" for the country, adding that the decision to furlough thousands of government workers “makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.”

“I don’t understand what the outcome is here, and I don’t understand where we’re going with it,” Cohn told the newspaper. “I’m confused as to what the White House’s strategy is on this a little bit.”

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Cohn resigned from the Trump administration last March amid differences with Trump over the president's protectionist trade actions.

His comments come days after the White House estimated that the economic impact of the shutdown will be worse than previously expected, while several agencies including the IRS have called some workers back to their jobs without pay to perform critical government functions.

The shutdown began Dec. 22 after Congress and the White House were unable to reach a deal to fund the government due to the president's demand for more than $5 billion in funds for construction of a border wall in any funding package.

Democrats in the newly-elected 116th Congress sworn in this month have refused to meet the president's demands while Trump has threatened to keep the government closed for months or even "years" to secure the border wall money.

Cohn, a Democrat and former president of Goldman Sachs, is set to begin a fellowship at Harvard this spring where he will co-lead a study group about the state of the economy with former Sen. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampFormer senators launching effort to help Dems win rural votes Pro-trade groups enlist another ex-Dem lawmaker to push for Trump's NAFTA replacement Pro-trade group targets 4 lawmakers in push for new NAFTA MORE (D-N.D.), who lost reelection in November.