House Democrats, on the first day of the new Congress, are pushing stopgap measures to fund the government and end the 12-day shutdown. The House is expected to vote on two resolutions — H.R. 21 and H.R. 1 — which would fund key government agencies. The bills, however, do not include $5.6 billion President Donald Trump has demanded to build a wall on the southern border.
"The Administration is committed to working with the Congress to reopen lapsed agencies, but cannot accept legislation that provides unnecessary funding for wasteful programs while ignoring the Nation’s urgent border security needs," the release said on Thursday. "If either H.R. 21 or H.J. Res. 1 were presented to the President [Trump], his advisors would recommend that he veto the bill."
The White House in the statement said the Democrats’ resolutions fund a number of unnecessary programs at levels 20 percent or higher than the president’s fiscal year 2019 budget request, including excessing foreign aid and other assistance for the West Bank/Gaza, Syria, Pakistan and UN programs.
The 116th Congress convened for the first time on Thursday with a new Democratic majority in the House amid a partial government shutdown that began on December 22 after Democratic lawmakers refused to meet Trump’s demand for more than $5 billion to build the controversial wall on the US-Mexico border. The president previously rejected a Democratic deal that included $1.3 billion in border security.