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Trump 'proud' to shut down government for wall funds

'If we don't get what we want, one way or the other... I will shut down the government," president says

11.12.2018
Trump 'proud' to shut down government for wall funds

By Michael Hernandez

WASHINGTON

U.S. President Donald Trump heatedly threatened Tuesday to shut down the government if Congress does not give him funds he is seeking to complete a border wall along the U.S.'s southern border. 

Trump said he would be "proud" to follow through with the threat unless he gets the $5 billion he is seeking from the Republican-held legislature.

The president openly feuded with Chuck Schumer, the Senate's ranking Democrat, about the matter, during a meeting with top congressional Democrats at the White House, eventually acknowledging he would "take" responsibility if it does come to pass.

"If we don't get what we want, one way or the other whether it's through you, through a military, through anything you want to call, I will shut down the government," he said in the Oval Office alongside Schumer and the House's top Democrat, Nancy Pelosi.

"I am proud to shut down the government for border security, Chuck," he said. "I will take the mantle of shutting down."

Trump has long promised to build the separation barrier, but has appeared to abandon his initial pledge to have Mexico pay for it after Mexican officials consistently rejected the demand.

Addressing reporters at the White House after the meeting, Pelosi said "the Trump shutdown is something that can be avoided," warning it could cost American jobs and hurt markets.

"The Trump shutdown is a luxury the American people cannot afford," she said.

Markets turned negative following Trump's threat after posting modest gains earlier Tuesday.

The government could face a partial shutdown Dec. 21 when some agencies would run out of appropriations.

Despite controlling both chambers of Congress, Republicans would need Democratic support to pass a spending bill, particularly in the Senate where 60 votes are required to overcome a procedural hurdle.

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