Democrats unveil funding bill to end shutdown - without money for Trump's border wall

The party will take control of the House later this week

Clark Mindock
New York
Monday 31 December 2018 21:58
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Democrats in the House of Representatives will introduce legislation to end the partial government shutdown once they take control of the chamber later this week - but it will not include funding for a US-Mexico border wall.

The legislation would extend current spending levels for border security through 8 February, but would deny President Donald Trump’s request for $5bn in funding for his oft-promised wall.

The planned legislation includes a package of two separate bills.

One of those bills extends funding for the Department of Homeland Security.

The other is an aggregate of six bills to fund over portions of the government for the rest of the fiscal year.

But, while the bill does include $1.3 billion in general border security funding, the legislation falls far short of the levels of spending Mr Trump has asked for — and has forced the shutdown of the US government over.

Separating the funding mechanisms would put new pressure on Mr Trump and Republicans in Congress to pass bills that would reopen the government, and could force Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to bring the second bill up for a vote to reopen the majority of the US government.

Democrats will take control of the House later this week, and Representative Nancy Pelosi is expected to be vote din as the next speaker of the House on Thursday.

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But the Democrats’ efforts to end the shutdown may encounter resistance from some of the Republicans who pushed for and have subsequently championed the shutdown, including House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows, who tweeted that the Democratic effort is a “non-starter”.

Nancy Pelosi’s newest funding proposal doesn’t represent any serious attempt to secure our border or find a compromise," Mr Meadows tweeted shortly after the plan to try to end the shutdown became public.

Democrats have dug their heels in since Mr Trump forced the shutdown over a week ago, and have refused White House efforts to compromise with $21 billion in border security and wall funding.

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