President Trump told a group of reporters at the White House over Christmas Day when they could expect the government to reopen: when Democrats meet him halfway on border wall funding.
Trump said he could not specifically say when Democrats will be willing to do so, but clarified that he would not budge on the decision and that he would keep the government closed until they cave.
The president admitted to being ok with less than the $5 billion he initially requested but said he needs “a wall, a fence, whatever they’ like to call it” before he is willing to reopen the government.
“I can’t tell you when the government is going to reopen … [Not until] we have a wall, a fence, whatever they’d like to call it. I’ll call it whatever they want. But it’s all the same thing. It’s a barrier from people pouring into our country,” Trump reportedly said to a group of reporters, via the Daily Caller.
“It’s a barrier from drugs. There is a problem in this world today called human trafficking … We are not going to let that take place. We are working so hard to catch these traffickers. They are bad people. We can’t do it without a barrier, we can’t do it without a wall,” Trump continued.
From the report:
Incoming acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney warned it is “very possible” the partial government shutdown will run into 2019, as Trump insists funding for the border wall must be included.
The two parties will have to figure out an agreement, and the senators must be present for a vote on the Senate floor to send a bill to the president to sign and end the government shutdown.
As ABC News reports, Trump claimed he has the backing of some government officials who are personally being affected by the shutdown.
“Many of those workers have said to me and communicated, ‘stay out until you get the funding for the wall,’” Trump claimed.
“These federal workers want the wall,” he added. “The only one that doesn’t want the wall are the Democrats.”
“It’s a disgrace what’s happening in this country,” Trump concluded. “But other than that, I wish everybody a Merry Christmas.”