Trump, Democrats to meet to avert government shutdown

Trump, Democrats to meet to avert government shutdown

The meeting, set for Thursday at the White House, comes just a day before federal spending expires that's needed to keep agencies functioning beyond midnight Friday night. "The president has given us until March to address the issue of undocumented children who came into the country ... through no choice of their own, and are in a kind of hard spot".

President Donald Trump on Wednesday again raised the possibility of a US government shutdown by week's end - blaming Democrats for that possible outcome - one day before he is due to host Republican and Democratic congressional leaders for talks on a spending bill.

"It could happen", Trump said during a Cabinet meeting at the White House, in response to a reporter's question about the Friday deadline for a spending bill to fund the government.

While GOP leaders and conservatives say they are both eager to avoid a "distraction" that might derail tax reform legislation, they're struggling to reach a truce to avoid a government shutdown.

"The Democrats are really looking at something that could be very risky for our country", Trump said. They want to have illegal immigrants, in many cases people that we don't want in our country ― they want to have illegal immigrants pouring into our country, bring with them crime, tremendous amounts of drugs.

Trump tweeted similar attacks on Democratic leaders shortly before a meeting that was scheduled last week, prompting angered Democrats to boycott it. Complicating the search for a pact are disputes over immigration, health and other issues folded into the year-end mix.

Hours before Trump and Capitol Hill leaders were to hold a budget meeting last Tuesday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., abruptly called off the session.

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'Look, there's not going to be a government shutdown. "Democrats are hopeful the President will be open to an agreement to address the urgent needs of the American people and keep government open". Even so, top Republicans expressed confidence that they'd approve the short-term measure this week, with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., saying, "We will pass it before the end of the week".

The moderated tone reflected a sense within both parties that though major differences remain over spending, immigration, health care and other issues, this was no time for a headline-grabbing government closure.

Conservative leaders met with top House Republicans and said they were seeking a strategy to reduce Democrats' budget leverage by quickly approving a full-year budget for the military.

Congressional leaders hope to use the two weeks afforded by the stopgap spending bill to work out an overall deal and attach it to another short-term spending bill that would be needed by December 22 to continue federal spending into January.

Graves also noted that the House passed it's GOP spending bills eight weeks ago - and the Senate has totally ignored them.

White House spokesman Raj Shah and a spokesman for McConnell confirmed Thursday's meeting.

Conservative leaders say they are concerned that GOP leaders may use the hoopla surrounding a final vote on the tax bill to obscure a separate vote on spending legislation that could include numerous Democratic priorities.

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