Tentative Deal Reached to Avoid Another US Government Shutdown
Several bipartisan congressional negotiators have reached a deal, in principle, to fund the government and avoid another government shutdown at the end of the week.
No one involved has given any details on the agreement, including whether U.S. President Donald Trump will get all the money he wants for a wall along the U.S. southern border.
Democrats have offered some funding for border security — far less than what Trump has said he wants he wants for a wall
The White House and lawmakers are facing a Friday deadline, when funding runs out again for about a quarter of government operations, to avert a new closure three weeks after a record 35-day shutdown was ended Jan. 25.
The president is in El Paso, Texas for a rally Monday night to focus on the wall he says would thwart people from illegally entering the United States from Mexico.
El Paso's former congressman, Beto O'Rourke, who is considering a possible run for the Democratic nomination in the 2020 presidential race, is leading a march in opposition to Trump's wall demand.
Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney has told NBC News another shutdown "absolutely cannot" be ruled out.
"The president really does believe that there is a national security crisis and a humanitarian crisis at the border and he will do something about it. He is going to do whatever he legally can to secure that border." Mulvaney said.
He said if Trump does not win approval for as much money as he wants, he is likely to say, "I'll go find the money someplace else," by tapping other government funds, a move sure to draw a legal challenge from Democrats.
Trump has not publicly stated what level of funding he would accept as a compromise to build a barrier along a relatively small portion of the 3,200-kilometer U.S.-Mexican border.