Democrats to hold votes to end government shutdown

Washington, Jan 3: Amidst all the ‘Wall-turmoil’, US opposition party Democrats have decided to hold votes on Thursday on legislation that would end the partial government shutdown without providing the $5 billion in border wall funding sought by President Donald Trump.

Trump, who is adamant on his demand for ‘a wall’, failed to come out with an agreement in his recent meeting with the US congressional leaders to end the government shutdown, which has now entered its 12th day.

Congressional leaders are expected to return to the White House on Friday to resume talks, signalling the shutdown will likely stretch into the weekend. 

The White House, however, has called the two-part package a “non-starter.”

“We’re asking the president to open up government,” Democrat Nancy Pelosi, the presumptive incoming House speaker, told reporters outside the White House after top lawmakers met with Trump and his homeland security officials behind closed doors.

A tweet on Wednesday morning also raised questions about why Trump still demands taxpayer money for the wall. He claimed “Mexico is paying for the wall” through a replacement of the North American Free Trade Agreement. The Trump administration has struggled to explain that assertion, and Congress still needs to approve the deal for it to take effect, reports CNBC.

The White House convened the meeting to try to convince Democrats that funding a wall on the southern border with Mexico was a pressing security need. Instead, Democratic leaders cut off Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Neilsen’s presentation and tried to no avail to press Trump to accept their offer. 

The Insides Speak