Trump border plan could prompt gov't shutdown, Democrat Durbin warns
Jan 07 2018
On Saturday Trump said that if the wall doesn't get funding, he could refrain from signing legislation protecting dreamers - the hundreds of thousands of young people brought to the country illegally as children.
Pro-immigration activists have pushed Democrats to use the threat of a government shutdown at the January 19 funding deadline in order to pass a "clean" DACA bill, with no concessions to Trump's demands.
The administration has now provided one of its most detailed blueprints of how the president hopes to carry out a signature campaign pledge.
Republicans countered that the Democrats' proposals for immigration were just as "ridiculous". In all, the Trump administration is seeking $33 billion in funding, of which $8.5 billion will go towards recruiting 5,000 new Border Patrol agents and other officials over a seven-year period to be deployed along the border with Mexico.
The White House has given Congress its long-awaited "punch list" for border-security reform, but the price tag attached to that list may put a strain on ongoing immigration talks. "With this demand, he seems to be heading in that direction", Durbin said in a statement. The funds, according to documents circulating in Congress, would pay for 723 miles of barrier - 316 miles of new construction, and 407 miles of upgrades in areas that are already fenced.
Republican Senator John Cornyn accused Democrats in a tweet of trying to force a deal on Dreamers by doing a "slow walk" on efforts to approve critical disaster aid and defense spending.
"We all want DACA to happen but we all want great security for our country", Trump said. "Bipartisan negotiations continue in good faith among senators who understand what is at stake, and I will continue my efforts to reach a bipartisan agreement".
Republican lawmakers met with Trump at the White House on Thursday and initially emerged saying they were optimistic that they could find a legislative fix for DACA. Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer reiterated that Democrats also want "strong and real border security".