Shutdown showdown is first battle for Trump in new era

Shutdown showdown is first battle for Trump in new era

Kerry Wise
January 1, 2019

Kelly conceded the point to the Los Angeles Times in an interview published Sunday: "To be honest, it's not a wall".

He says the mix of technological enhancements and "steel slat" barriers the president now wants along the border resulted from conversations with law enforcement professionals on the ground. "But we left a solid concrete wall early on in the administration, when we asked people what they needed and where they needed it", Kelly added.

Three confidants of President Donald Trump, including his departing chief of staff, are indicating that the president's signature campaign pledge to build a wall along the U.S. -Mexico border would not be fulfilled as advertised. It's a theory that will be put to the test when the new House Democratic majority gavels in this week and votes to end the government shutdown without money for President Donald Trump's border wall with Mexico.

The partial government shutdown is in its second week over Trump's demand for US$5 billion for the wall. Top Democrats, meanwhile, said they had made their position against additional wall funding known and awaited a counteroffer from Trump and Republicans.

The retired Marine general said Trump often pressed him on his legal authority to do certain actions, asking, "Why can't we do [something] this way?"

Instead, Pelosi has said the new House will move to "quickly" approve a spending measure to end the partial government shutdown.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., emerged from a Sunday lunch at the White House to tell reporters that "the wall has become a metaphor for border security" and referred to "a physical barrier along the border".

The stark contrast in Trump and Pelosi's shutdown plans came to light on Friday when the Free Beacon reported on Pelosi's expensive vacation on Hawaii's Big Island at the Fairmont Orchid resort, where rooms range from $899-a-night to $4,899-a-night. He quickly learned that even the most vulnerable senators from states Trump won in 2016, while favoring border security, did not want to spend the money on the wall. At the time, Trump proposed a sweeping amnesty for children brought into the USA illegally and their relatives in return for wall funding and immigration reforms.

Trump on Twitter criticized Democratic opposition to the wall project, which carries a total estimated price tag of US$23 billion. And it sets the stage for a more active legislative branch ready to confront the White House.

Meteor seen across the state on Wednesday night
Was it a rocket launch, a fireball, or maybe even the work of aliens? The launch was tentatively reset for 5:31 p.m. The launch was scrubbed once already this week - on Tuesday afternoon - because of high winds in the area.

Kelly also confirmed the president's willingness to compromise on his long-promised wall on the Southern border.

A spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told the Wall Street Journal on Monday that the chamber wouldn't take up legislation without public support from the president.

In one of the tweets on Monday, Trump reminded Democrats they have voted in favor of a border barrier twice before.

Unwilling or unable to pick one objection to Trump's border wall proposal, they have panned it as "immoral, ineffective and expensive" as well as "fifth-century technology". "I'll get it built, and Fast!".

Trump also sought to push back against Democratic arguments that a border wall is an antiquated approach to illegal immigration.

Senator Susan Collins, Republican of ME, called the White House on Friday urging an "immediate fix" and termed the outcome "good news".

"If we blame each other, this could last a long, long time", Shelby said on CBS News' "Face the Nation."

Mr Trump earlier had upped the brinkmanship by threatening anew to close the border with Mexico to press Congress to cave to his demand for money to pay for a wall. Thus, President Trump may well feel emboldened to risk a lengthy shutdown in the hopes that voters will continue to not view a shutdown as catastrophically as the media.