Trump Knocks Down John Kelly's Attempt to Soften Border Wall

Minnie Murray
January 1, 2019

The first bill, sources say, will include year-long funding plans for every government agency now closed, with the exception of the Department of Homeland Security.

House Speaker-Designate Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said Monday that on Thursday, the House would vote on a series of measures that would reopen the government.

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

A week and a half into a partial government shutdown, House Democrats released their plan to re-open the government without approving money for President Donald Trump's border wall.

More importantly, while Democrats did vote in favor of the Secure Fence Act of 2006, which authorized construction of 700 miles of fencing along portions of the USA border with Mexico, it was a fraction of the barrier Trump seeks to build.

"An all concrete Wall was NEVER ABANDONED, as has been reported by the media", he rage tweeted Monday morning.

"They can come over right now, they could've come over anytime". Democrats are days away from taking control of the House of Representatives and inaugurating a novel challenge for Trump's presidency - congressional oversight.

Thus, even if both chambers do ultimately pass a funding measure that does not contain wall funding, a presidential veto would keep the government closed, since Trump nearly certainly retains enough support in both chambers for his wall plans to sustain a veto, at least for now. There have been no face-to-face negotiations since Vice President Pence and others held meetings at the Capitol on December 22, the day the shutdown began. The 2013 vote that passed the Senate by a margin of 67-27 approved the construction of 700 miles of border fencing and a doubling of the number border agents, but it also cleared the path for citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the USA, something conspicuously lacking from Trump's proposal.

I spent Christmas in the White House, I spent New Year's Eve now in the White House. "One more yes, but with me in office, I'll get it built, and Fast!".

"Nancy Pelosi's newest funding proposal doesn't represent any serious attempt to secure our border or find a compromise", House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) said in a tweet prior to the plan's unveiling.

In other words, Democrats will seek to detach the border wall fight with the president from other appropriations and kick the final reckoning on border security into February.

At first, Trump seemed eager to take on responsibility for a shutdown. He's not going to get $5 billion for a wall. Senior adviser Kellyanne Conway accused Democrats of fixating on Trump's description of the wall, calling the impasse "a silly semantic argument".

"We pushed the pause button", McConnell said the day the government was scheduled to partially close, "until the President, from whom we will need a signature, and Senate Democrats, from whom we will need votes, reach an agreement".

The other will be on a measure made up of six other bipartisan bills - some that have already passed the Senate - to fund the departments of Agriculture, Interior, Housing and Urban Development and others closed by the partial shutdown.

"Democrats are united against the President's immoral, ineffective and expensive wall - the wall that he specifically promised that Mexico would pay for", Drew Hammill, a Pelosi spokesman, said in an emailed statement. The Russia investigation of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III also is unaffected since it is paid for by a permanent, dedicated funding stream.

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