With the clock ticking, it’s still unclear whether Congress and President Trump will come to an agreement that would avert a partial government shutdown. On Thursday, President Trump said he would not sign the stopgap spending measure passed in the Senate Wednesday, as it did not include funding for his $5 billion U.S.-Mexico border wall, which he always insisted Mexico would pay for. Late Thursday, the House passed a new version of the spending bill which included the border wall funding, but it is expected to be rejected in the Senate today. In a video address, Trump compared his proposed wall to the separation wall in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories.
President Donald Trump: “I am asking Congress to defend the border of our nation for a tiny fraction—tiny fraction—of the cost. Essential to border security is a powerful physical barrier. Walls work, whether we like it or not. They work better than anything. In Israel, 99.9 percent successful. Think of it. I spoke to Benjamin Netanyahu, prime minister, two days ago. We were talking about it. He said it’s 99.9. I mean, he came up; I didn’t ask. He said 99.9 percent successful.”
If no deal is reached, the government will go into partial shutdown at midnight tonight. Some of the agencies that will be most affected by a possible shutdown include those dealing with homeland security, law enforcement, national parks, transportation and housing. Hundreds of thousands of government workers will not be paid if that shutdown happens. President Trump now says if the shutdown occurs, it’s the Democrats’ fault. Last week he said he was proud to own the government shutdown if the wall isn’t funded.