Make no mistake about it, the $5 billion President Trump is asking for to fund the wall on our southern border is a drop in the bucket, compared to the overall budget. The Democrat’s decision to deny the funding of the wall is all about embarrassing Trump and taking away his ability to fulfill his most valuable campaign promise to his supporters—building the wall. This is a calculated move that Democrats are banking on to help weaken President Trump’s chances of being reelected in 2020.
According to Breitbart – Congressional leaders said late Friday there will be no new House or Senate votes on Friday evening, meaning the federal government is heading into a partial shutdown at midnight for the third time in President Donald Trump’s presidency.
Both the House and the Senate have adjourned until noon on Saturday, ensuring that a partial government shutdown will hit the federal government just days before Christmas as Democrats on Capitol Hill resist funding for border security – particularly a wall.
The impasse comes as President Trump pushes for $5 billion in funding for his planned border wall along the U.S. border with Mexico, and Democrats are opposed to funding the wall.
Two hours before House and Senate members adjourned, President Trump addressed the nation on the importance of the border wall.
OUR GREAT COUNTRY MUST HAVE BORDER SECURITY! pic.twitter.com/ZGcYygMf3a
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 22, 2018
The U.S. Senate on Wednesday evening passed a bill that fully funds the federal government through Feb. 8, 2019, at the beginning of the new Congress when Democrats take over control of Congress’s lower chamber the U.S. House of Representatives.
On Thursday, as all indications were that the White House and President Trump were going to go for that deal, outgoing House Speaker Paul Ryan had planned to announce at a press conference on Capitol Hill that the House would pass the Senate-passed continuing resolution–which has zero dollars for Trump’s border wall–something they would need Democrat votes to accomplish.
But, under criticism from top conservative leaders, Trump reversed course and made an emergency phone call to Ryan to tell him he would not sign any bill that does not provide funding for the wall. After that, the House passed a new continuing resolution that contained $5.7 billion in border wall money, as well as several billion dollars in disaster relief funds late Thursday.
On Friday, the Senate–after keeping the vote open for hours while senators negotiated–finally voted to approve the motion to proceed onto the bill that the House passed. But senators still do not have enough votes to pass the House-passed bill that funds the wall.
Senior CNN correspondent Manu Raju tweeted that Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell informed him as he was leaving for the night the “constructive talks are underway” and made it abundantly clear that Democrat votes are needed to avert a government shut down.
McConnell, leaving for the night, said “constructive talks are underway.” Asked if he would be coming back to participate in the talks he said, “as I’ve said repeatedly. We need Democratic votes and presidential signature.”
McConnell, leaving for the night, said “constructive talks are underway.”
Asked if he would be coming back to participate in the talks he said, “as I’ve said repeatedly. We need Democratic votes and presidential signature.”@tedbarrettcnn
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) December 22, 2018
Fox New reports – Republicans who are losing control of the House in January – see the spending fight as their last chance to secure funding for Trump’s long-promised border wall. Democrats have blasted the wall as unnecessary, expensive and offensive.
Both sides have been busy assigning blame. While Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi have already branded this outcome a “Trump shutdown,” the president tweeted Friday that “it will be a Democrat Shutdown!” if they don’t support border wall funding.
Congress may have time to work out a deal before really affecting some workers: Because the partial government shutdown comes during the Christmas break, some government workers weren’t planning to work over the next four days anyway.
According to a precedent set during the Reagan administration, federal workers can be exempt from furloughs if their jobs are related to national security or if they perform essential activities that “protect life and property.”
The Cabinet-level departments closing are Agriculture, Commerce, Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, Justice, State, Transportation and Treasury.
But essential personnel are still required to work without pay. Nearly 90 percent of the Homeland Security staff is deemed essential.
The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) will remain open as usual during a partial government shutdown because it is “an independent entity that is funded through the sale of our products and services, and not by tax dollars,” a spokesman told Fox News.
Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents, air traffic controllers and border security agents would also be required to work through a shutdown – though they might not get a paycheck right away.
Amtrak, a government-owned corporation, will also continue with normal operations during a short-term shutdown, a spokeswoman confirmed to Fox News.