‘Could be a while’: Trump refuses to budge in shutdown standoff

03 January, 2019, 03:11 | Author: Roderick Gutierrez
  • Donald Trump is standing firm on his demand for billions of dollars for the wall

But they have drawn the line at the use of any taxpayer money for the erection of a new wall.

The House passed a version of an appropriations bill before the partial shutdown with $5.6 billion for wall construction and that included funding for a variety of agencies and departments, including Homeland Security, NASA, and the IRS.

The president said his Homeland Security officials will "make a plea" for the border wall during a briefing for congressional leaders later Wednesday at the White House.

Updated at 1:30 p.m. with more details from Trump's extended cabinet meeting.

Trump himself seemed to shrug off any urgency to bring a close to the shutdown, which has kept hundreds of thousands of federal workers at home, shut down some services and left national parks in disarray.

"I spent a whole career infiltrating places, and when we came up upon a wall, it matters", said the Texas Republican and former U.S. Navy SEAL on Fox News' "Fox and Friends." "Our question to the president and to the Republicans is why don't you accept what you have already done to open up government?" No matter what you think of her, you have to give her credit because, think about it, think about all those presidents she's endured, right?

"No, we are not giving up", Trump added. White House officials believed the educational brief would help convince the Democratic leaders that funding for a physical border barrier is necessary.

"She'll cut your head off and you won't even know you're bleeding", Pelosi said about her mother.

The two sides have traded offers, but their talks broke down ahead of the holidays.

Trump warns US govt shutdown could last 'a long time'
Trump claims Mexico is paying for wall, demands taxpayer money...

Amid the stalemate over the wall, Trump shelved his annual Christmas vacation in Florida, choosing to remain in Washington and fire off a stream of angry, and often misleading tweets. Schumer said the other day that the government could be reopened but only if border wall funding was abandoned. Instead, Trump repeatedly pushed for the $5.6 billion he has demanded.

John Kelly told the Los Angeles Times in an interview published Sunday that Trump abandoned the notion of "a solid concrete wall early on in the administration". Neither of the Democratic options would provide the additional funding for border security requested by The White House. He also criticized Nancy Pelosi, the House Democratic leader, for visiting Hawaii. "And that is why on January 3rd, when the new Democratic House majority arrives, we will bring the hope, vision and goals of effective governance back to the forefront".

He renewed his challenge on the 12th day of the shutdown, hours before meeting with Democratic leaders at the White House. He promised "six more years of great success".

It would also include another measure to fund the departments of Agriculture, Interior, Housing and Urban Development and others closed by the partial shutdown.

He wrote that Mexico would be paying for the wall along the US border under the parameters of a trade deal he has tentatively inked with Mexico and Canada.

"If they knew they couldn't come through, they wouldn't even start", Mr Trump said at a meeting joined by Cabinet secretaries and top advisers.

"We have given the Republicans the chance to take yes for an answer", Pelosi said.

Pelosi and Schumer, citing the bipartisan nature of the full-year funding measures and the unanimous Senate support before the partial shutdown of a stopgap bill to fund the government to February 8, attempted to ramp up the rhetorical pressure on Republicans in advance of the House votes.

The draft may not pass the Republican-held Senate, but it will form part of a Democratic blueprint heading into the 2020 presidential election year. A spokesman for GOP leader Mitch McConnell said Republicans would not take action without Trump's backing. At the same time, administration officials said Trump was in no rush for a resolution to the impasse.



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