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U.S.

Schumer: If Border-Wall Fight Shuts Down Government, Blame Trump, Republicans

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer in Washington, D.C., November 14, 2018. (Aaron P. Bernstein/REUTERS)

Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer said Tuesday that if the government shuts down next month amid a fight over funding for the construction of a wall at the southern border, it will be the fault of President Trump and congressional Republicans.

“We are for strong border security. We’ve made numerous proposals.” Schumer said. “If there’s any shutdown, it’s on President Trump’s back.”

Trump is demanding $5 billion in next year’s budget for the wall, a request Democrats have flatly refused. A shutdown looms as lawmakers continue to butt heads over the issue as December 7, the date when the current spending bill expires, approaches. A new bill to continue funding the Department of Homeland Security would need 60 votes to pass the narrowly divided Senate.

“Left to our own devices, the Senate and House could come to an agreement,” Schumer continued. “The Republicans are in control of the presidency, the House, and the Senate. A shutdown is on their back.”

Schumer added Senate Democrats plan to “stick to the $1.6 billion” for the border wall that they have already negotiated with Republicans.

“[A shutdown] could happen over border security. The wall is just a part of border security — a very important part, probably the most important part,” Trump said last week.

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