Published: Wed, December 06, 2017
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

Trump, Democrats to meet to avert government shutdown

Trump, Democrats to meet to avert government shutdown

McConnell's statement came a day after the House announced a plan to pass another continuing resolution in order to extend federal funding through December 22 as the current stopgap measure approaches the December 8 deadline.

McConnell is expected to join House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) at a meeting Thursday with President Trump at the White House to discuss a budget deal.

Trump is scheduled to have lunch with Republican members of the Senate at the White House on Tuesday.

"We showed the president. We think he learned and he invited us back", Schumer told reporters.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said during a weekly briefing with reporters that Republicans expect to vote this week on a measure to extend the CR from December 8 to December 22 to "give us a little room to talk" about a bipartisan deal to raise defense and non-defense spending above caps mandated by the 2011 Budget Control Act. "We Democrats are doing what we've done before and that is push for parity".

Knowing that, Democrats are using their leverage to try forcing concessions to boost domestic spending in areas like health care and infrastructure. "We'll pass it before the end of the week", McConnell said Monday. And we must also come together on a bipartisan deal to pass the DREAM Act along with tough border security measures.

The fate of the immigration dispute remained unclear.

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Schumer said negotiators are continuing to talk, but said Trump's rhetoric is throwing a "monkey wrench" into the process. He added, "We do want to resolve this, but it's not going to be before the end of this year".

The Republican bill will provide some short-term help for states that are running out of money to finance a health insurance program for lower-income children, Republican aides said.

Conservative members of the House Freedom Caucus asked House Republican leaders to extend the duration of the stopgap measure through December 30 in exchange for their votes for the House to go to conference with the Senate on tax legislation, which moved Congress closer to a final bill for a major tax overhaul. They have argued that the leaders' preferred December 22 deadline gives Democrats leverage because lawmakers are tempted to give in and go home for Christmas.

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., head of the Freedom Caucus, said his group was having "a good, healthy discussion" with leaders about ways to "fund the government without putting our military at a disadvantage".

The House Republican leadership agreed to consider the December 30 date and talk to the Senate leadership about it, a House Republican leadership aide said.

Because a two-year budget deal is expiring, the defense spending cap is due to drop in 2018to $549 billion from this year's $551 billion, while non-defense spending is to fallt o $516 billion from $519 billion.

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