Published: Mon, December 24, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Trump's budget director predicts government shutdown could last into 2019

Trump's budget director predicts government shutdown could last into 2019

Democrats have refused to agree to any new money for the border wall.

White House Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said today that it was "very possible" the partial government shutdown will last into the new session of Congress.

For the shutdown to end, both the House and the Senate will have to approve any deal negotiated between Trump's team and Republican and Democratic leaders.

Trump postponed his holiday in Florida for more talks in the White House after several USA agencies ceased operations at midnight local time.

US President Donald Trump, who is demanding Congress allocated $5bn for his border wall, and Democrats played the blame game as negotiations got under way earlier in the day.

A partial government shutdown remains in effect after funding expired for roughly a quarter of the federal government when the clock struck midnight on Saturday - and it is not clear when it will end.

"This is what Washington looks like when you have a president who refuses to sort of go along to get along", Mulvaney said.

Key parts of the federal government have been impacted by the shutdown, including the Department of Homeland Security, the Justice Department, the Interior Department, the State Department and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Vice President Mike Pence proposed spending $2.5 billion on border security, including the wall, in a stopgap spending bill during meetings on Friday night and Saturday afternoon with Schumer, three sources familiar with the matter told CNN.

Trump orders 'significant' troop withdrawal from Afghanistan
The Pentagon is developing plans to withdraw up to half of the 14,000 American troops serving in Afghanistan, US officials said. Some analysts say the US troop withdrawal could also have a silver lining and could send a useful message to all sides.

The president's $5 billion demand is just a down payment on Mr. Trump's borderwide vision.

Democrats held firm Sunday in opposition to a wall, which Trump promised his political base he would build. Mulvaney said "the president's not going to not accept money for a border wall". They said that "President Trump threw a temper tantrum" and highlighted the fact that "President Trump has said more than 25 times that he wanted a shutdown".

In a separate interview for Fox News, he said he was waiting to hear from Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer about a new Republican offer, without specifying the sum.

Yet the disruption has affected many government operations and the routines of 800,000 federal employees.

After reviewing how Trump has repeatedly called for a government shutdown, how the Senate had unanimously agreed to extend government spending through February to avert a shutdown, and how this was rejected by Trump due to the influence of his far right advisers, Schumer emphasized that Trump's border wall goals were politically impossible. "The paychecks [for federal employees], importantly, will go out on the 28th [of December]", said Mulvaney.

Democrats said they were open to proposals that don't include a wall, which Schumer said is costly and ineffective. "It's a spectacle and, candidly, it's juvenile", said Corker, speaking in his final days before stepping down from Congress.

The Pentagon and the departments of Veterans Affairs and Health and Human Services are among those that Congress has fully funded and will operate as usual.

Conservative Republicans welcomed the ensuing confrontation but most of the party wanted to avoid it, because polling shows the public oppose both the wall and a shutdown over it. Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee said: "This is a complete failure of negotiations and a success for no one". About 420,000 were deemed essential workers and will work unpaid in the lead-up to Christmas.

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