I'll shut border with Mexico if I don't get my wall

by Garry Watts December 31, 2018, 0:48
I'll shut border with Mexico if I don't get my wall

White House chief of staff John Kelly, who is set to leave the Trump administration within days, flatly asserted in remarks published Sunday that the president's proposed border project "is not a wall" and that all plans for a concrete wall were abandoned long ago - directly contradicting the White House's repeated claims to the contrary.

"The president still says "wall" - oftentimes frankly he'll say "barrier" or 'fencing, ' now he's tended toward steel slats", Kelly added.

US President Donald Trump threatened on Friday to "entirely" close the US southern border if Congress does not agree to provide US$5 billion in taxpayer funds for his promised wall along the border with Mexico.

A partial government shutdown-which has affected approximately a quarter of US government departments-began at midnight on Friday after the president declined to sign a stop-gap measure to keep the government running through New Years Day on the basis that it did not provide funding for his proposed wall along the border of Mexico and the U.S.

"Democrats have offered Republicans three options to re-open government that all include funding for strong, sensible, and effective border security - but not the President's immoral, ineffective and expensive wall".

But Trump has continued to refer to his planned border structure as the "Wall".

But this year, with part of the government unfunded because of the Democrats' refusal to negotiate over border security and a "wall" or "fence" or whatever they want to call it, according to President Trump, House Speaker candidate Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, is living high in Hawaii.

Counsellor Kellyanne Conway tells Fox News Sunday that Trump is waiting for Democrats to reach out to him.

"They said, 'Well we need a physical barrier in certain places, we need technology across the board, and we need more people, '" Kelly told the Times.

Asked about Mr Trump's border-closing threat, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador insisted it was an internal U.S. government matter. But that won't accomplish anything unless Trump and the Republican-controlled Senate go along with it. "Now he's canceled his plans for New Year's", Mulvaney said.

Michael Fish's NBC26 Storm Shield weather forecast
Highs will top out in the low-40s, but the temps will oddly continue to rise as we head through the night. Accumulation appears light across the Front Range at 1-3 inches, but prepare for a snowy morning commute.

The Latest on partial shutdown of the federal government, now in its second week.

Democratic leaders in the House and Senate have been negotiating with the Trump administration.

Lindsay Graham, who said he hoped to end the shutdown by offering Democrats incentives to get them to vote for wall funding.

"It's never been: The president just wants to make a decision based on no knowledge and ignorance", Kelly said.

In fact, Pelosi has all but locked up the support she needs to win the speaker's gavel after the new Congress convenes on Thursday, and there has been no sign that she and Schumer are in conflict. It marked the starkest admission yet by the president's inner circle that his signature campaign pledge, which sparked fervent chants of "build that wall" during Trump's rallies and is now at the centre of a budgetary standoff, would not be fulfilled as advertised.

Despite Trump's threat, the United States this month announced a new collaboration with Mexico on a program to curb migration from Central American countries, with much of the $US10.6 billion ($15 billion) USA contribution to be drawn from existing aid programs.

On Christmas Day more than 40 migrants tried to cross the sea and enter the UK.

Talks have been at a stalemate for more than a week, after Democrats said the White House offered to accept US$2.5 billion for border security.

The House on December 21 approved a spending bill that included $5.7 billion for border wall construction.

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