By BRIAN A. HOWEY, in Nashville, Ind.

1. Where the buck stops now

Here are your final power lunch talking points for Shutdown Week III: There was a two and a half inch by 13 inch sign on a walnut base that periodically appeared on the desk of President Harry S Truman"The Buck Stops Here!"  derived from an old poker phrase. In an address at the National War College on Dec. 19, 1952 President Truman said, "You know, it's easy for the Monday morning quarterback to say what the coach should have done, after the game is over. But when the decision is up before you - and on my desk I have a motto which says 'The Buck Stops Here' - the decision has to be made." It is a phrase repeated by just about every American president  since when they vow to own a decision.Except for President Trump

A reporter asked President Trump on the South Lawn Thursday as he headed to Marine One for the border trip: "Does the buck stop with you over this shutdown?" The President: "The buck stops with everybody."  This coming just weeks after he vowed to "own the mantle" of a government shutdown, entering a record 21 days. He's now blaming Democrats. As he headed to the Mexican border for a photo op he really didn't want to do, Trump also disavowed saying that Mexico would pay for the wall:“Obviously, I never said this, and I never meant they’re going to write out a check." But Hoosiers know otherwise. At rallies from Indy, to Westfield, to Fort Wayne to Evansville, Trump repeatedly said he would build a wall and Mexico would pay for it. I heard him say it; you heard him say it. According to the Washington Post, he's said it 212 times, even on his campaign website. Under his jacket, was Trump wearing a T-shirt saying, "I'm with stupid"? Does he think we don't remember? Or that video/audio won't reveal his utterances? Sheesh.

2. Trump's executive power grab

President Trump now appears ready to declare a national emergency to build the border wall. The New York Times  reports that Trump is pondering diverting funds from the Puerto Rico, Florida and Texas hurricane disasters and California's wildfires, as well as Pentagon funding to pay for the wall. Conservatives are sounding alarms. The National Review's Rich Lowry: "This would make Trump the second president in a row willing to cut Congress out of the legislative process if it doesn’t agree to his priorities on immigration, and is a very bad idea. It would functionally be an end run around Congress’s power of the purse; create yet another precedent for 'pen and phone' governance, which is not how our system is meant to work; and probably not achieve his substantive and political goals." And the Wall Street Journal: "An emergency declaration could let Mr. Trump end the shutdown without conceding an inch to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, but it would strain the limits of his executive authority. A political spending fight over the wall doesn’t warrant a national-emergency raid on military funds."

3. Indiana delegation on mute

The South Bend Tribune's  Jeff Parrott: With the U.S. government shutdown stretching into a third week, several Republican members of Congress from Indiana remain vague on the matter, even as they stand behind the president. Indiana Republican Sens. Todd Young and Mike Braun, and Rep. Jackie Walorski declined The Tribune’s requests for interviews on the shutdown, and declined to answer the following questions via email: • Do you agree with Trump’s stance on wall funding — not “border security” but specifically the wall? Is a wall necessary and do you agree that we should spend $5 billion on it? • If you do agree, do you think the wall funding is worth the shutdown? • What are you telling federal employees in Indiana who aren’t getting paychecks (as of Friday)? • Do you have any ideas for a compromise to end the stalemate? One Member who did talk was U.S. Rep. Greg Pence, in a rare interview with the Columbus Republic. He vowed to pass on his $174,000 salary during the shutdown now depriving 20,000 Hoosier federal employees of their paychecks today, saying, “My thinking is to share the pain. Now it is affecting me as well.”  So there's JFK's "Profiles in Courage," and then there's ....

4. Holcomb finds teacher pay funds

Gov. Eric Holcomb believes it has found funds for teacher pay raises in the coming biennial budget, though it remains committed to a two-budget process for a restructured pay system. Holcomb's finance team now believes the December revenue forecast didn't take into account increased revenues from the current fiscal year. It will also advocate ending teaching bonuses. It now believes it can get teachers a 2% increase.

5. Chairs for mayors

St. Joseph County Democratic Chairman Jason Critchlow is resigning to run for mayor now that South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg isn't seeking reelection. "As a volunteer and executive of this complex organization, my goals were to create one that is modern and professional, advocate for policies that help the lives of working families, and empower and elevate good people to do great things in our community in order to create a more dynamic future for everyone," Critchlow said. "Now is the time for a new leader to step in to maintain that reputation and build upon our successes." In Indianapolis, Sen. Jim Merritt stepped down as GOP chairman to challenge Mayor Joe Hogsett.

OK folks, our first big snowstorm is coming. We recommend you rush to the store and buy up all the milk, bread and beer. We forecast a Colts divisional playoff win at Kansas City, 23-17. It's The Atomic!