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Shutdown: Pres. Trump Signs Law Ensuring Pay For Government Workers

18 January, 2019, 10:58 | Author: Sara Gill

The House passed the measure by voice vote.

The shutdown dragged into its 25th day on Tuesday with neither Trump nor Democratic congressional leaders showing signs of bending on the topic that triggered it - funding for the wall Trump promised to build along the border with Mexico as part of his hardline policy on immigration. In a White House meeting, Trump asked Pelosi whether, if he agreed to end the shutdown and negotiate separately on border security, she would support wall funding.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced Wednesday the department has called back 2,500 employees to reopen Farm Service Agency offices on Thursday, Friday and next Tuesday to process existing farm loans and provide tax documents. "We'll be out for a long time".

Trump on Wednesday is expected to sign legislation that would ensure 800,000 federal employees will receive back pay when the government reopens.

In exchange for a three-week reopening of the government, the senators promise to commit that time to make "our best efforts following regular order in the appropriate committees and mark up bipartisan legislation relating to your request". We will reschedule this seven-day excursion when the Shutdown is over. The previous longest was 21 days in 1995-96, when Bill Clinton was president.

The White House has threatened to veto the stopgap bills, saying they fall short on border security funding.

When Trump rhetorically backed off the wall and talked about "steel slats" - a fence - Democrats ignored it.

"I look forward to seeing you soon and even more forward to watching our open and unsafe Southern Border finally receive the attention, funding and security it so desperately deserves!" he concluded.

Trump ended up lunching with a selection of lesser-known House Republicans. But with the shutdown in its fourth week, the White House and Democrats in a stalemate and the impasse draining the finances of hundreds of thousands of federal employees, little routine is left in the capital.

Democrats will object that the Gang of Eight bill did fund a border wall, but it was in exchange for a lot of concessions.

Underscoring that, Sen. Mike Rounds, R-S.D., said Republicans were divided over a proposal by Sens. Roy Blunt of Missouri, a member of GOP leadership. They are people who heard President Trump say he would be "proud" to shut down the government.

Some lawmakers are reluctant to return home for next week's planned recess - some were planning their first town halls of the new year - as the standoff deepens.

With the shutdown in its fourth week, that suggests the economy has lost almost a half-percentage point of growth so far, though some of that occurred at the end of last year and some in the first quarter of this year. "I hope by the end of today we have a robust, bipartisan letter that we can deliver to the president".

Rep. John Carter, Texas Republican, said he wasn't prepared to assign blame to anyone in particular.

Pelosi writes that "given the security concerns and unless government reopens this week, I suggest that we work together to determine another suitable date after the government has re-opened".

Said Sen. Chris Coons (D) of Delaware, "The shutdown will eventually take us to a place where the average American is angry at and sick of all of us".

Inviting the president to give the speech is usually pro forma, and Pelosi issued the invitation in routine fashion, in consultation with the White House, several weeks ago.

The letter from Pelosi is sure to irk the White House, which has yet to respond publicly.

One attendee, John Katko, told CNN that Trump "wanted to continue to engage in negotiations".


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