Trump tweets: 'Let's make a deal?' in shutdown

Donald Trump

The House and Senate will reconvene briefly on Wednesday to mark the last day of the Republican-controlled 2017-2018 Congress, with no signs of a workable plan to end the shutdown, which is now in its second week.

A federal employee labor union is suing the USA government for requiring "essential" employees to work without pay during the partial government shutdown.

The meeting is set for 3 p.m. (2000 GMT) in the White House Situation Room, generally used for high-level security concerns such as military planning. "Senate Republicans have already supported this legislation, and if they reject it now, they will be fully complicit in chaps and destruction of the President's third shutdown of his term". "Let's make a deal?" he tweeted.

If they spurn funding bills for departments unrelated to border security, Republicans could be seen as holding those agencies and hundreds of thousands of affected employees hostage to Trump's desire for a wall, part of his hard-line immigration policies that appeal to his conservative political base.

Democrats take charge of the House of Representatives from Trump's fellow Republicans when the new 2019-2020 Congress convenes on Thursday.

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi, who is expected to become speaker on Thursday, and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer planned to attend.

But Trump appeared to strike a more conciliatory tone seeking to bring Democrats to the table after acerbic remarks over the weekend.

"It is important to note that these bills contain no new wall funding", Pelosi said in a letter Tuesday to Democratic House members. After aides suggested there would not necessarily be a traditional wall as Trump had described since his presidential campaign, Trump insisted otherwise.

But he seemed to shift tactics later in the day, appealing to Pelosi.

"Border Security and the Wall "thing" and Shutdown is not where Nancy Pelosi wanted to start her tenure as Speaker!"

President Donald Trump said USA homeland security officials will make a plea for a southern border wall in a White House meeting with congressional leaders on Wednesday, adding that he was open to working on a path to legal status for young illegal immigrants known as Dreamers.

Prior to Sanders' statement, Trump signaled he may still be willing to "make a deal" with Democrats.

It was unclear if Wednesday's meeting, arranged by Trump on Tuesday, would lead to a breakthrough. It includes a bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security, which oversees construction of the wall, at current levels through February 8, with $1.3 billion for border security-a figure far less than Trump requested.

The spending package also includes a second measure that would extend funding for Homeland Security through February 8. It would provide money through the remainder of the fiscal year, to September 30.

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