Trump Says a Shutdown 'Could Happen' - Here's What's Holding Things Up

08 December, 2017, 01:25 | Author: Brenda Erickson
  • Donald Trump Mike Pence Paul Ryan Nancy Pelosi Mitch McConnell Chuck Schumer

President Trump warned Wednesday that a government shutdown "could happen" this week, and sought to put the blame on Democrats over their stance on immigration policy.

"I want to avoid a headline that says President Trump's administration just passes the highest spending levels in USA history", Meadows told two reporters. Unlike the efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act and overhaul the tax code, Republicans need 60 votes in the Senate to pass government funding.

Democratic votes will be needed to pass a funding deal in the Senate.

Congressional Republican leaders as well as U.S. House of Representatives Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer are scheduled to meet with Trump on Thursday.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said at a press conference on Thursday that it is one of the party's priorities.

Despite incendiary words from President Trump, Congress seemed on track Wednesday to approving legislation that would avert a partial government shutdown over the weekend as all sides seemed ready to avert a confrontation - for now.

President Trump tried to emphasize bipartisan unity, appearing with the leaders and Vice President Pence in the Oval Office before they began talks on Thursday afternoon.

Pelosi said the temporary spending measure before the House on Thursday was a "waste of time".

Republicans can pass such a measure in the House with only GOP votes because they require just a simple majority, but with approximately 40 conservatives in the House Freedom Caucus usually opposed to spending bills, House Democrats have been needed to pass such measures in recent years.

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Trump says of Democrats: "They want to have illegal immigrants pouring into our country".

This time, the White House smoothed the waters by following up with a more peaceable, written statement. Trump ended safeguards against deportation three months ago but has expressed an openness to restoring them. The written statement said Trump was glad the two top Democrats had made a decision to "put their responsibility to the American people above partisanship" and said Trump was anticipating productive talks between "leaders who put their differences aside".

Meadows said the Freedom Caucus had not taken a final position on whether it will back the short-term bill, but he and several others stopped short of saying they'd oppose it.

Later, the White House issued another statement indicating Trump would sign the two-week spending extension. It said money for the military including missile defense and security along the border with Mexico "must be prioritized in a long-term funding agreement".

For Republicans, a shutdown would put a humiliating bookend on a year in which they've controlled the White House and Congress with little to show for it.

The legislation will include some short-term help for states running out of money to finance a health insurance programme for lower-income children. CHIP, which has nearly always been a bipartisan priority, expired over two months ago, but Congressional Republicans continued to play games with this vital program that helps the most vulnerable children in our society ...

Democrats have the ability to demand changes in the spending bills because Republicans do not have enough Senate votes to block a Democratic filibuster in that chamber.

Republicans generally favor more money for defense programs, while Democrats often demand equal increases for domestic social programs.

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