POLITICS

Trump, Democrats Hold Firm To Their Views On Border Wall

Dec 24, 2018, 4:55 PM | Updated: Jun 8, 2022, 5:16 pm
WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 24: The White House is shown during a partial shutdown of the federal government on December 24, 2018 in Washington, DC. The partial shutdown will continue for at least a few more days as lawmakers head home for the holidays as Democrats and the Trump administration cannot agree on an amount of funding for border security. (Photo by Win McNamee/Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
(Photo by Win McNamee/Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump met Monday with his Homeland Security secretary and other officials to discuss border security issues as a partial government shutdown over his U.S.-Mexico border wall entered Christmas without a clear resolution in sight.

Though both sides have traded offers over the dollars, they remain far apart on the wall. The White House insisted Trump will reject any deal that does not include money for a wall or fence; Democrats held firm in their opposition to a wall or other physical barrier.

In a joint statement Monday, the Democratic leaders of Congress, Sen. Chuck Schumer and Rep. Nancy Pelosi, said that as long as Trump keeps listening to the House Freedom Caucus and others on the right flank, there is no easy resolution to the impasse.

“It’s Christmas Eve and President Trump is plunging the country into chaos,” the leaders said. They pointed to problems beyond the shutdown, including the plunging stock market and the president’s firing of the defense secretary. “The president wanted the shutdown, but he seems not to know how to get himself out of it.”

White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said a counteroffer was presented over the weekend to Schumer. Mulvaney would only say the offer was between Trump’s $5.7 billion request and $1.3 billion Democrats have offered.

“We moved off of the five and we hope they move up from their 1.3,” Mulvaney said Sunday, a day after a senior administration official insisted Congress would have to cave into Trump’s spending demand for the shutdown to end. The comments highlighted Trump’s unpredictable negotiating style.

A Democratic aide granted anonymity to discuss the private talks confirmed the White House offered $2.5 billion, an initial $2.1 billion plus $400 million Democrats called a “slush fund” for the president’s other immigration priorities.

Mulvaney said he was awaiting a response from Schumer, whose office said the parties remained “very far apart.”

Trump chimed in from the White House, where he has been cooped up since the shutdown began early Saturday.

“I am all alone (poor me) in the White House waiting for the Democrats to come back and make a deal on desperately needed Border Security,” Trump tweeted. “At some point the Democrats not wanting to make a deal will cost our Country more money than the Border Wall we are all talking about. Crazy!”

Trump put off plans to head to his Florida estate for Christmas. His wife, first lady Melania Trump, returned from Florida to spend the holiday with him.

The president’s border security meeting Monday afternoon included Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and other department officials, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said.

Senate negotiators continued talks behind the scenes with Democrats and Republicans. The House and Senate briefly gaveled into session on Christmas Eve before closing again with no further action.

In their statement, Pelosi and Schumer said “different people from the same White House are saying different things about what the president would accept or not accept to end his Trump Shutdown, making it impossible to know where they stand at any given moment.”

Trump blamed Democrats for the stalemate, tweeting Monday that “Virtually every Democrat we are dealing with today strongly supported a Border Wall or Fence. It was only when I made it an important part of my campaign, because people and drugs were pouring into our Country unchecked, that they turned against it. Desperately needed!”

However, an AP Fact Check found that U.S. arrests on the Mexican border jumped 78 percent in November from a year earlier to the highest level in Trump’s presidency. Increased arrests indicate that more people are trying to cross the border illegally.

Several Cabinet departments and agencies have been closed since Saturday after their funding lapsed. The closure affects hundreds of thousands of federal workers across the country and was expected to last at least through Thursday, when the House and Senate meet again.

Monday and Tuesday, Christmas Eve and Christmas, respectively, are federal holidays, meaning the government is closed anyway. That means Wednesday is the first day the public could begin to feel the effects of lost government services, Mulvaney said.

The routines of about 800,000 federal employees, meanwhile, were about to be disrupted.

More than half of those employees deemed essential, including U.S. Secret Service agents and Transportation Security Administration agents, must work without pay, though retroactive pay is expected. Another 380,000 were to be furloughed, meaning they will not report to work but would also be paid later. Legislation ensuring workers receive back pay was expected to clear Congress.

Mulvaney predicted the shutdown could stretch into January, when Democrats assume control of the House.

“It’s very possible that this shutdown will go beyond the 28th and into the new Congress,” he said.

Justin Goodman, a spokesman for Schumer, countered: “If Director Mulvaney says the Trump Shutdown will last into the New Year, believe him, because it’s their shutdown.” Trump recently declared he’d be “proud” to shut down the government over border issues.

Trump promised during the campaign to build a border wall. Progress toward funding the wall has been slow and Trump sees the final days of the GOP’s complete control of Congress as his last chance to force the issue. Some Republicans also oppose building a wall.

___

Follow Darlene Superville and Lisa Mascaro on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/dsupervilleap and http://www.twitter.com/LisaMascaro

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Politics

An Atlanta-area special grand jury investigating former President Donald Trump's attempts to overtu...
Sara Murray and Jason Morris, CNN

Graham, Giuliani, Eastman and other Trump advisers subpoenaed in Georgia election probe

An Atlanta-area special grand jury investigating former President Donald Trump's attempts to overturn the 2020 election in Georgia has subpoenaed a handful of key Trump allies, including his former attorney and South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham
1 day ago
Representative Tricia Derges (Credit: Missouri House of Representatives)...
Associated Press

Missouri lawmaker resigns from House after fraud conviction for selling Covid treatments

A Missouri GOP legislator has resigned after being convicted of falsely claiming she was giving patients stem cell treatments for COVID-19.
3 days ago
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 08: A protestor holds a 'Let's Go Brandon!' sign in Grand Park a...
STEVE MEGARGEE, AP Sports Writer

Boy helps Brown put new spin on ‘Let’s go, Brandon’ chant

Brandon Brown wanted a way to change the narrative behind the “Let’s go, Brandon” message after his first career NASCAR victory fostered an insulting chant against President Joe Biden.
3 days ago
Supporters against abortion rights at the Utah Capitol....
Michael Houck

Hundreds of Utahns gathered at Utah capitol, celebrating the end of Roe v Wade

Hundreds of Utahns gathered to celebrate the overturning of Roe vs. Wade, asking those supporters to show compassion to the opposition.
4 days ago
CHEVY CHASE, MD - JUNE 08: Law enforcement officers stand guard as protesters march past Supreme Co...
Associated Press

High court marshal seeks enforcement of anti-picketing laws

The marshal of the U.S. Supreme Court has asked officials to step up enforcement to prohibit picketing outside the homes of the justices.
4 days ago
FILE: The U.S. Supreme Court is shown on April 25, 2022, in Washington, D.C. (Photo by Kevin Dietsc...
ACACIA CORONADO and ED WHITE, Associated Press

Texas Supreme Court blocks order that resumed abortions

The Texas Supreme Court has blocked a lower court order that gave some abortion clinics confidence to resume performing abortions.
4 days ago

Sponsored Articles

hand holding 3d rendering mobile connect with security camera for security solutions...
Les Olson

Wondering what security solutions are right for you? Find out more about how to protect your surroundings

Physical security helps everyone. Keep your employees, clients, and customers safe with security solutions that protect your workplace.
Many rattan pendant lights, hay hang from the ceiling.Traditional and simple lighting....
Lighting Design

The Best Ways to Style Rattan Pendant Lighting in Your Home

Rattan pendant lights create a rustic and breezy feel, and are an easy way to incorporate this hot trend into your home decor.
Earth day 2022...
1-800-GOT-JUNK?

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
Trump, Democrats Hold Firm To Their Views On Border Wall