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Congress Ready to Punt Spending Fight for Two Weeks

Congress Ready to Punt Spending Fight for Two Weeks”

That gives negotiators an extra two weeks to finalize legislation to fund roughly a dozen agencies, including critical areas like the State Department and the Departments of Homeland Security and Transportation. And even some Republicans balk at spending more than the $1.6 billion already provided.

Democrats have long held off on giving into Trump's demand for funding to build his border wall, which he promised Mexico would pay for throughout his 2016 presidential campaign.

Getty President Donald Trump speaks with reporters.

Trump was gearing up for a showdown as he sought billions for the construction of a wall along the U.S. -Mexico border.

"House Democrats will continue to stand firm in opposition to the border wall boondoggle and, while we are willing to negotiate on how best to secure our border, we will never support wasting tax dollars on a wall created to gin up the Republican base". He did not provide any evidence for the savings, but again threatened to close the "entire Southern Border if necessary".

Congressional leaders introduced a two-week funding bill Monday to avert a partial government shutdown over President Donald Trump's border wall, as business in the Capitol came to a standstill for ceremonies honoring former President George H.W. Bush.

On Thursday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-New York, called on Trump to support a $1.6 billion border security compromise between Senate Republicans and Democrats, instead of the $5 billion figure Trump and House Republicans support.

Bush said Trump and Congress' devotion of time to his grandfather's legacy reflects the late president's commitment to bipartisanship.

The president also said that Melania Trump will be giving former first lady Laura Bush a tour of the White House Christmas decorations Tuesday.

Rep. Vicente Gonzalez, D-Texas, said, "We need all hands on deck to oppose frivolous border wall spending proposals".

Lawmakers are considering a sweeping criminal justice package with sentencing reforms, a farm bill that's a top priority of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other items before year-end.

"The $1.6 billion ... the language is broader than just a wall, so I think that that could probably be agreed upon, which was a figure in the Senate bill", Hoyer said.

The Kentucky Republican told reporters over the weekend that it's up to Trump "to do a deal with the Democrats". Federal funding for those agencies is set to expire at midnight Friday.

Without action by Congress, federal agencies including the Department of Agriculture, State Department and Department of Homeland Security would find themselves without any money to pay employees and administer programs through the fiscal year that ends next September 30.



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