U.S. Senate Democratic leader floats plans to avoid federal government shutdown

Source: Xinhua| 2018-11-30 13:42:21|Editor: Yang Yi
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 29 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer on Thursday floated two proposals for President Donald Trump to avoid a partial federal government shutdown in early December.

"If President Trump wants to throw a temper tantrum and shut down some departments and agencies over Christmas, that's certainly within his power, but he has two more sensible options available to him," Schumer said on the Senate floor.

Trump could agree to sign a bipartisan spending deal for the Department of Homeland Security that would provide 1.6 billion U.S. dollars for border security measures, said the New York Democrat.

"If the president doesn't want to agree to the bipartisan bill, we could avoid a shutdown by passing a continuing resolution for the Department of Homeland Security," Schumer said.

"We think it should be for the whole year. It would keep the government open and still provide another 1.3 billion dollars for border security," he added.

U.S. lawmakers agreed earlier this year to fund most of the federal government in 2019, but the funding for the Department of Homeland Security, Justice Department, State Department and other federal agencies is set to expire on Dec. 7.

In an interview with Politico published Wednesday, Trump said he would "totally be willing" to shut down the federal government if Congress doesn't approve the 5 billion dollars he is demanding for building a wall along the nation's southern border with Mexico.

Republicans have floated a two-year plan that would meet Trump's demand for 5 billion dollars for border security, but many Democrats are unlikely to back the plan.

The U.S. federal government has already been briefly shut down twice this year, due to disagreements over border security and immigration issues between Republicans and Democrats.