Partial shutdown likely to continue until after Christmas

By Meg Wagner, Veronica Rocha, Brian Ries, Paul P. Murphy and Sophie Tatum, CNN

Updated 12:34 p.m. ET, December 27, 2018
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1:34 p.m. ET, December 20, 2018

Paul Ryan: Trump won't sign funding bill

President Donald Trump will not sign the current Senate-passed funding measure that would avert a government shutdown, House Speaker Paul Ryan said Thursday.

House Republicans met with Trump at the White House earlier to discuss funding for the border wall and the partial shutdown.

"The President informed us that he will not sign the bill that came over from the Senate last evening because of his legitimate concerns for border security," Ryan said.

Ryan vowed to return to Capitol Hill to continue working on a solution to fund the government and "border security."

"We want to keep the government open, but we also want to see an agreement that protects the border," he said. "We have very serious concerns about securing our border."

1:22 p.m. ET, December 20, 2018

Federal agencies are being told to notify employees of pay status if there's a shutdown 

From CNN's Jim Acosta 

The White House is following Office of Budget and Management guidelines on notifying federal employees whether they'll be furloughed in case of a government shutdown, a senior administration source tells CNN.

Here's how they explained it:

"Prudent management requires that agencies be prepared for the possibility of a lapse. OMB guidance states that two business days before a potential lapse, agencies need to notify employees of their work and pay status under a lapse — that is, if they are furloughed or excepted. Agencies were directed by OMB to start that notification this morning." 

The comments came as President Trump met with GOP leaders at the White House Thursday to discuss his unhappiness with the continuing resolution, which would provide stop-gap funding. 

If a spending measure is not passed by Friday night, the government could face a partial shutdown. Read up on what that means here.

12:48 p.m. ET, December 20, 2018

Schumer: Senate Democrats are "not budging on the wall"

From CNN's Manu Raju, Ryan Nobles, Liz Landers, Lauren Fox and Sarah Westwood

Senate Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY)
Senate Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

As the deadline to fund part of the government approaches, House and Senate Democrats are standing firm on their position: No border wall funding.

Here's where key Democrats stand:

  • Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, speaking on the Senate floor just before noon, said Senate Democrats “are not budging on the wall.” 
  • House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, at her weekly press conference this morning, didn’t have much insight into the efforts of House Republicans, saying they appear to be in a “meltdown." She added that Democrats are prepared to support the clean continuing resolution. Pelosi made it clear that Democrats will not support anything that includes funding for a border wall.
12:18 p.m. ET, December 20, 2018

These are some of the funding options GOP leaders are considering

From CNN's Manu Raju

House Republican leaders are considering various options to discuss in their meeting with President Trump, a source involved in the planning said.

According to the source, here are some of those options:

  • Add money for the border wall to the stop-gap measure
  • And disaster relief

A key point: The idea is to demonstrate that $5 billion in wall money doesn’t have the votes to pass both chambers of Congress. It would either narrowly pass or narrowly fail in the House but has no chance to pass the Senate.

At that point, GOP leaders would put other measures — potentially the continuing resolution that passed the Senate — on the floor. But Trump hasn’t said he would sign that yet. That was discussed at a closed-door meeting with GOP leaders in Ryan’s office, according to a source who attended.


12:00 p.m. ET, December 20, 2018

House Republicans head to the White House as discussions to add provisions to the CR are underway

From Manu Raju, Ryan Nobles, Liz Landers, Lauren Fox and Sarah Westwood

Rep. Mark Meadows is one of several Republicans heading to the White House today.
Rep. Mark Meadows is one of several Republicans heading to the White House today. ALEX EDELMAN/AFP/Getty Images

House Republicans, including Reps. Mark Meadows, Steve Scalise, and Jim Jordan, will be meeting with President Trump shortly at the White House, as Sarah Sanders said today that Trump “is continuing to weigh his options.”

Scalise tells CNN that House GOP leaders met this morning with Speaker of the House Paul Ryan to discuss adding more money on the clean stop-gap measure that passed the Senate last night. 

Scalise says that the items under consideration are more funding for a border wall and more disaster aid, saying “we are having that conversation now.”

Of course, adding these provisions would complicate passage of the CR, and raise questions about how to pass a measure through both chambers to avoid a shutdown.

Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL) spoke with reporters briefly as he headed into the Judiciary hearing with Secretary Nielsen, saying he thinks a two-bill proposal is being considered right now but did not have many details, adding “don’t think they have the votes for a CR without some enhanced border security.”

11:26 a.m. ET, December 20, 2018

Sanders: Trump, who will meet with GOP members today, "does not want to go further without border security" 

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders just released the following statement with the topic line "Update on Government Funding":

“The President is having a meeting with Republican House Members at noon today. At this moment, the President does not want to go further without border security, which includes steel slats or a wall. The President is continuing to weigh his options.”
11:16 a.m. ET, December 20, 2018

White House official says it's possible Trump will reverse course on the CR

From CNN's Pam Brown, Kaitlan Collins, and Ryan Nobles

A senior White House official says it’s possible that President Trump will decide not to back down on the wall fight as a result of growing pressure from the Freedom Caucus and conservatives.

Last March when he reluctantly signed an omnibus bill, officials say Trump was furious. Current and former officials say the President screamed at aides and Republicans on the Hill before signing the measure, and he made a point of going in front of the media and declaring he would never sign a measure like that one again. 

Citing that incident a senior White House official tells CNN's Pamela Brown it’s still unclear what Trump will do, adding “if Congress can’t give the President border wall funding now with Republicans in charge we certainly don’t stand a chance with Pelosi and the Dems taking over the House next year. “

Meanwhile on Capitol Hill: CNN’s Ryan Nobles spoke to Rep. Mark Meadows, who described the state of play on the Continuing Resolution as “very fluid right now,” adding “I haven’t heard anything about the conversation the President had with Speaker Ryan except that he had one.”

Meadows said Speaker Ryan stepped out of the meeting when the president called, and never returned. The meeting continued on with out him.

President Trump is clearly indicating on his Twitter feed this morning that he has a problem with the short-term spending bill. He’s growing more sensitive by the day to criticism that he’s backing off his promise to build a border wall.

Trump is watching those who are going after him, and then taking it out on aides around him, and now an official says he’s taking serious issue with the CR, including that unscheduled phone call with Paul Ryan this morning.

8:07 a.m. ET, December 20, 2018

The Senate passed a stop-gap funding bill late last night

From CNN's Clare Foran and Ted Barrett

The Senate passed a stop-gap spending bill on Wednesday night in an effort to keep the government funded and prevent a partial shutdown at the end of the week.

A shutdown hasn't been averted just yet: The measure will still need to be approved by the House of Representatives and signed by President Trump before it can take effect. 

But the Senate's passage of the short-term measure brings Washington one step closer to staving off a shutdown of some key federal agencies, set to expire at midnight on Friday, just days before Christmas.

The Senate worked late into the night on Wednesday to pass the measure, which had appeared to have hit a snag earlier in the day over a push to advance public lands legislation.

2:09 p.m. ET, December 19, 2018

Cornyn says Trump will sign the "clean CR" to keep the government funded

From CNN’s Manu Raju

Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn has just emerged from a lunch on Capitol Hill with Vice President Mike Pence and told CNN that President Trump will sign the clean Continuing Resolution to keep the government funded through Feb. 8. 

“He will sign a clean CR,” Cornyn told CNN.