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Trump digs in on the wall and the shutdown

28 December 2018

US President Donald Trump is accusing the Democrats of opposing funding for a border wall only to deny him and the Republican party a policy victory.

Trump is demanding that the bill funding the Department of Homeland Security include $5 billion for the border wall. Just 35 percent of the adults polled support including border wall funding the bill to fund the rest of government.

"Have the Democrats finally realized that we desperately need Border Security and a Wall on the Southern Border".

"Business owners who have staff are making the decision: Do we pay people or not, even though we won't get paid by the government?".

Lawmakers are away from Washington for the holidays and have been told they will get 24 hours' notice before having to return for a vote.

According to the Associated Press, around 420,000 people are working without pay, while another 380,000 have been put on furlough.

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Together, 400,000 federal employees weren't able to go to work Wednesday.

Barring some sort of deal in the interim, House Democrats expect to vote on a funding bill on January 3, a Democratic aide said.

There is at least one union that has been generally supportive of President Trump's efforts on a border wall, however.

After a weekend and two holiday days for federal employees, Wednesday (Thursday NZT) was the first regularly scheduled workday affected by the closure of a variety of federal services.

Trump's demand for a physical barrier on the US-Mexico border - a pillar of his election platform - has been rejected by Democrats and some Republicans. Democrats have held firm in their opposition to giving Trump money for the wall, and there's been no public indication that Pelosi risks an erosion of Democratic support over the negotiations.

Most of the federal government, which directly employs nearly 4 million people, is unaffected.

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Negotiating will be significantly more hard if the shutdown extends into next week when Democrats will gain control of the House on January 3.

Dick Durbin, a senior Democratic senator, shot back with his own tweet: "No end in sight to the President's government shutdown", Durbin said. Her last day of work was Friday, due to the shutdown, which started that midnight.

In a Christmas Day appearance in the Oval Office, Mr Trump issued a lengthy defence of his desire for a wall, saying it is the only way to stop drugs and human traffickers from entering the US.

The decades-long Democrat said her frustration was mostly directed "at the president, honestly ― he's the one calling the shots". "I'm not going to talk about it now", he said. As Byron York of the Washington Examiner documented, Democrats backed the 2006 Secure Fence Act, as well as the 2013 proposal that would have insisted on building a barrier along the southern border.

In a District of Columbia-based case regarding limits on asylum protections for domestic and gang violence victims, Justice Department attorneys asked for more time to respond to a federal judge's order to "bring back to the United States" anyone deported in expedited removal proceedings.

"At this point, it looks like we could be in for a very long-term shutdown", the North Carolina Republican said on CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper".

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Trump didn't say how he's hearing from federal workers, excluding those he appointed to their jobs or who work with him in the White House.

Trump digs in on the wall and the shutdown