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Senate Adjourns Till Dec. 27 Without Deal to End Shutdown

Saturday, 22 December 2018 12:51 PM

The Senate adjourned Saturday without a deal to end a partial government shutdown as talks dragged on over President Donald Trump's border wall with Mexico.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has ended the rare Saturday session hours after the Senate had opened.

Talks were underway at the Capitol involving Vice President Mike Pence and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer.

But there was no resolution to the impasse, and the Senate was not scheduled to meet again until Monday — Christmas Eve — for a pro forma session. The next full session of the Senate is scheduled for Thursday.

Still, McConnell told reporters that negotiations are continuing and that he will call the Senate back into session at any time to vote for a deal if one is reached.

The partial shutdown started early Saturday amid a standoff over Trump's request for $5 billion for the wall. Democrats have refused, and are offering to keep funding at existing levels, $1.3 billion, for border security, but not the wall.

Following a lunch meeting at the White House between President Donald Trump and congressional Republican leaders, the White House indicate the president remained committed to his call for more that $5 billion for a border wall. Democrats insist they won't agree to the demand.

Trump tweeted about the time the Senate adjourned: "The crisis of illegal activity at our Southern Border is real and will not stop unil we build a great Steel Barrier or Wall. Let work begin!

"I won an election, said to be one of the greatest of all time, based on getting out of endless & costly foreign wars & also based on Strong Borders which will keep our Country safe. We fight for the borders of other countries, but we won’t fight for the borders of our own!"

As the Senate's Saturday session opened, McConnell said it is up to Trump and Democrats to reach a deal to end the partial government shutdown. McConnell did not attend the White House lunch.

As the Senate returned to work Saturday, McConnell said he hoped an agreement could be reached "sooner rather than later."

He said any deal to re-open government would need Democratic support for passage and Trump's signature to be signed into law.

About an hour after McConnell made his remarks on the Senate floor, Schumer, took to the floor to counter him.

"It will never pass the Senate," Schumer said of Trump's insistence of $5.7 billion in funding for a border wall. "Not today. Not next week. Not next year. So, Mr. President... if you want to open the government, you must abandon the wall, plain and simple."

Trump wants the $5.7 billion for the border wall with Mexico. Democrats are only willing to keep funding at existing levels, $1.3 billion, for border fencing and security, but not the wall.

One-quarter of the federal government shuttered beginning Saturday.

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says it's up to President Donald Trump and Democrats to reach a deal to end the partial government shutdown.The impasse is over Trump's demand for billions of dollars in money for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.As the Senate...
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2018-51-22
Saturday, 22 December 2018 12:51 PM
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