Published: Mon, January 07, 2019
Global Media | By Garry Long

Trump says "not much headway" in talks to end gov't shutdown

Trump says

"We need to open up government and then negotiate".

OPM plans to issue new guidance once Congress passes updated legislation, Weichert said in the memo.

Vice-President Mike Pence told Fox News the deal was being "talked about", but that Mr Trump said no deal was possible "without a wall".

"Where is the emergency?" the Washington Democrat said on ABC's "This Week".

The president had indicated before nine Cabinet agencies and other federal offices ran out of funding that he would sign a bipartisan stopgap measure passed the Senate that would have kept those entities open through February 8 to allow time for border wall talks; but he came out against that bill when conservative opinion-shapers warned him he needed to make a border wall stand since it was a top campaign promise.

A meeting between President Donald Trump and Democratic leaders on Friday included so many expletives that Trump reportedly apologised to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Collins and others are also up for re-election in 2020 from states including Colorado and North Carolina where views on Trump are mixed.

As IJR Red reported, Pelosi, who was elected speaker of the house on Thursday in the newly Democrat-run House of Representatives, sidestepped Tlaib's controversial comments and insisted it was "freedom of speech", adding that she's not in the "censorship business". Democrats familiar with the meeting said the White House position was "untenable".

In the meantime, Trump is engaged in a dispute with opposition Democratic lawmakers over his demand for more than $5 billion in funding for the barrier, a stalemate that has shut down about a quarter of USA government operations for 16 days, already one of the longest government closures in US history.

That's despite the fact that his administration has already spent millions constructing wall prototypes near the border in San Diego.

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Democrats have signalled they could accept a deal that precluded a concrete wall but provided funding for a steel barrier. "Absolutely, we could call a national emergency because of the security of our county", the president told reporters at a Rose Garden news conference.

The contentious gathering comes amid a partial government shutdown, now stretching past its second week, after Trump stressed he would not sign any short-term funding bill that does not include funding for his proposed border wall. A day earlier, he had tweeted he didn't care that "most of the workers not getting paid are Democrats".

Trump noted that previous presidents and senators had no objection to voting for or funding barriers on the Southern border.

"The President's authority in this area is intended for wars and genuine national emergencies", Evan Hollander, communications director of the House Appropriations Committee, told CNN.

The President said on Friday after meeting with congressional Democratic leaders that he was prepared for a partial government shutdown to last for months or even years if they don't agree to provide funding for border security, including the wall. Such a move would nearly certainly be met with legal challenges.

In this photo taken on January 3, 2019, Tlaib participates in a ceremonial swearing-in at the start of the 116th Congress at the US Capitol in Washington, DC.

Trump spoke to reporters at the White House on the ongoing shutdown as it entered its 16th day.

More discussions are planned for Sunday.

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