House passes spending bill with $5 billion border wall funding, increasing likelihood of shutdown

Posted at 4:50 AM, Dec 21, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-21 08:10:30-05


Hoping to avert a government shutdown, House Republicans on Thursday passed a stopgap spending measure that included $5 billion for a southern border wall, putting it at odds with the Senate and increasing the likelihood of a government shutdown. No Democrats supported the measure.

The Senate bill that passed Wednesday did not include the money for the border wall funding. The bill is considered dead on arrival in the Senate, which requires a 60-vote majority for passage.

If it fails in the Senate, House leadership will have to decide whether they want to vote on a clean short-term funding bill on the floor – one without additional border wall or disaster funding. That would probably pass with almost entirely Democratic votes and a few Republican votes, sending it to the president’s desk.

Mr. Trump said earlier Thursday that he would not sign the Senate bill passed Wednesday which would keep the government funded through February. Though the White House had suggested Wednesday that the president could find other sources of funding for the wall, his conservative allies railed against a bill without wall funding, and Reps. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., and Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, urged him to veto such a bill.

“I’ve made my position very clear: any measure that funds the government must include border security,” Mr. Trump said in relatively lengthy remarks on border security at the farm bill signing Thursday afternoon.

After he met with the president Thursday afternoon, House Speaker Paul Ryan reported that Mr. Trump was unwilling to sign the Senate bill. Ryan said that the House Republicans would rework their bill to include wall funding.

“We’re going to go back and work on adding border security to this also keeping the government open because we want to see an agreement,” Ryan said.