Congressional negotiators dug in for a weekend of talks on a security plan that includes some sort of barrier on the US-Mexican border, hoping to complete a deal to avert another government shutdown that’s also acceptable to President Donald Trump.
Trump was back in the fray, indicating in a tweet that if Democrats didn’t give him all the wall money he’s demanded, he may use executive action to build it. Democrats have warned such action would face court challenges, and some Republicans have suggested it’s an option best avoided.
Negotiators were homing in on a proposal with border barrier funding of between $1.3 billion and $2 billion, said a person familiar with the talks. That’s far lower than the $5.7 billion that Trump had been demanding.
Representative Steven Palazzo, a Republican member of the House-Senate panel holding the talks, said that he expects a deal “before the end of the weekend” that could be finalized on Monday. The Mississippi lawmaker said some key details are still under negotiation, including the amount of money for barriers on the US-Mexico border.
Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney and Senate Appropriations Chairman Richard Shelby were scheduled to appear on political talk shows on Sunday, which could provide additional clarity on how talks are progressing.