July 28, 2017

Government Shutdown 2017: What's the likelihood Congress passes a budget plan?

27 April 2017, 10:04 | Rodolfo Wallace

The Democratic leadership rejected an earlier demand by the White House that the measure include $1 billion as a down payment on President Donald Trump's border wall between the USA and Mexico, pledging to block a funding extension and allow large parts of the federal government to shut down unless the border wall allocation was removed.

As part of the Affordable Care Act, the federal government pays health insurers to reduce the out-of-pocket costs for low-income people trying to pay for health care. Ultimately, Pelosi turned to White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus to obtain assurances that the administration would continue to provide the payments.

The same day, federal agencies would have to close unless lawmakers pass a $1 trillion spending bill financing them or legislation keeping them open temporarily while talks continue. "We are down to the last final things".

But it appeared increasingly unlikely that such a plan would be debated this week.

President Donald Trump will aim to give Republicans a boost in a contested Georgia runoff, The Atlanta Journal Constitut.

Republican senator Jeff Flake, who represents the border state of Arizona, told reporters on Tuesday there was a need for a wall in some border locations and alternative deterrents in others.

Representative Steny Hoyer, the second most powerful Democrat in the House, said he would advise colleagues to support a short-term funding proposal only if a longer-term fix was imminent.

Democrats are warning that the White House, which stayed out of the fray during much of these talks, is ratcheting up demands, insisting on including border wall money in exchange for continuing to pay insurance companies subsidies to bolster the Obamacare marketplace, which they say is a nonstarter.

According to Fox News, Foreign Secretary Luis Videgaray called Trump's plan for a wall an "unfriendly, hostile" act in a meeting with Mexican legislators.

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Democrats were fine with the Republican counterproposal to increase overall border security spending, which includes repairing existing fence and adding new surveillance technologies. A dispute over the timeline nearly derailed the December deal to keep the government running.

"That's not our intention or goal", Ryan told reporters.

Democrats uniformly oppose the wall and will vote en masse against a bill with such funding attached.

WASHINGTON (AP) - The White House and congressional Democrats on Wednesday defused a tense standoff over payments for the working poor under the health care law, keeping a massive government spending bill on track just days ahead of a shutdown deadline.

"The President and his advisers are every day, I think learning new lessons about how delicate and complicated this process is".

"The concerns that I've had have not been addressed by the current proposals", Rep. Dan Donovan, R-N.Y., said Wednesday. For many lawmakers, it's a fantastical joke that they have to carefully navigate. The wall was a useful metaphor - just like Frost's wall - that helped Trump get elected; it was brash shorthand that communicated his restrictive immigration policies to voters.

Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said Tuesday that Trump would sign a spending bill to keep the government funded this week, even if it's lacking funds for a border wall.

During the campaign, he repeatedly described an "impenetrable physical wall" along the length of the southern border that would be built from concrete, rebar, and steel and stand as high as his venues' ceilings. And we're not going to allow any dollars in any kind of border security appropriation to be used for a wall.

Meanwhile, House politicians returned to Washington on Tuesday evening and faced a renewed push from the White House to revive their beleaguered health care bill in hopes of attracting enough votes to finally push it through the House.

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