Published: Wed, January 02, 2019
Global | By Craig Ferguson

Trump invites congressional leaders to White House

Trump invites congressional leaders to White House

House Democrats have prepared two bills aimed at ending the partial government shutdown but neither includes any new money for President Trump's border wall.

One bill would temporarily fund the Department of Homeland Security at current levels, with $1.3bn - well below the $5bn in wall funding Trump has requested - for border security through February 8 as talks continued. A prolonged crisis could hobble House Democrats' ability to launch their agenda, which included investigations of the president and oversight of his administration, including Russian interference in the election. I'm not going to blame you for it.

On Monday, Trump tweeted that he is "not giving up" on funding for the wall, adding that he has "no choice" but to continue the government shutdown, suspending payment for hundreds of thousands of government employees, including critical air travel and Coast Guard security branches.

Earlier in December, Senate Republicans signed off on a plan that would have averted the shutdown but did not include new wall money, only to have Trump publicly denounce the proposal the next day.

The Democratic legislation will mark the first major battle pitting the incoming Democratic House majority led by Nancy Pelosi against Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who has said his chamber will not consider any legislation that Trump would not support.

He also reiterated his claim - so far unproven - that Mexico was paying for the border wall through the new trade deal struck between all three North American countries (Canada, Mexico and the United States).

McKinley said Trump is right for not agreeing to a compromise with less border security funding.

"It would be the height of irresponsibility and political cynicism for Senate Republicans to now reject the same legislation they have already supported", Democratic leaders said in a statement.

Democrats under Nancy Pelosi are all but certain to swiftly approve the package in two separate votes planned for Thursday.

The partial USA government shutdown will nearly certainly be handed off to a divided government to solve in the new year.

"We have no choice, we have to have border security and a wall is part of border security".

"The president still says "wall" - oftentimes frankly he'll say "barrier" or 'fencing, ' now he's tended towards steel slats".

Pelosi responded with a tweet, saying Trump "has given Democrats a great opportunity to show how we will govern responsibly & quickly pass our plan to end the irresponsible #TrumpShutdown - just the first sign of things to come in our new Democratic Majority committed to working #ForThePeople".

House of Representatives Democrats will introduce legislation this week meant to end a partial U.S. government shutdown and fund the Department of Homeland Security through Feb 8, including US$1.3 billion (S$1.77 billion) for border security but not the US$5 billion President Donald Trump has demanded for a border wall, a senior Democratic aide said on Monday (Dec 31). Earlier Tuesday, the president ripped into Democrats for insisting they won't fund a border wall.

Trump says a wall is needed along the whole border to keep out migrants trying to enter the country illegally, casting them as an "invasion" force of risky criminals. But like the proposal now on the table, it did not meet Trump's border-wall demands.

"An all concrete Wall was NEVER ABANDONED, as has been reported by the media", Trump tweeted. The White House has not provided any information on the meeting or the administration officials who will be present.

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