Donald Trump tweeted on Thursday that he may yet shut down the government if the stopgap spending measure Congress has sent him doesn’t include money for a border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, Business Insider is reporting.
Congress is currently working without a budget, and if a working budget fails to get to the president’s desk — and get his signature on it — the government will have to shut down, as it has a few times in the past. To forestall a shutdown, the Republican-led Congress has sent Trump a temporary budget, referred to as “short-term funding bill,” or CR, that would keep the government running through February 8 — perhaps enough time for Congress, and the president, to come up with a more permanent budget.
However, the temporary budget presented by Congress lacks the one thing Donald Trump wants the most — $5 billion in funding for the border wall.
In a tweet Thursday morning, he indicated that he’s not going to sign any bill that doesn’t include that money.
“When I begrudgingly signed the Omnibus Bill, I was promised the Wall and Border Security by leadership. Would be done by end of year (NOW). It didn’t happen! We foolishly fight for Border Security for other countries – but not for our beloved U.S.A. Not good!”
In fact, Thursday’s tweet came not long after an earlier tweet which seemed to indicate that he might be satisfied with the way things stand at the border, CNBC reports.
“With so much talk about the Wall, people are losing sight of the great job being done on our Southern Border by Border Patrol, ICE and our great Military. Remember the Caravans? Well, they didn’t get through and none are forming or on their way. Border is tight. Fake News silent!”
Meanwhile, outgoing Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, in the waning days of his career, said that he had to cancel a planned press conference due to an “emergency” phone call from Trump.
The current Congress will almost certainly be Trump’s last chance at getting any Congressional money at all for his border wall, a project which he’s been advocating ever since he began his presidential campaign. That’s because the new Congress, which convenes in January, will see a House of Representatives controlled by Democrats, who are unlikely to provide money for the wall.
Trump’s original claim that Mexico would pay for the wall has failed to pan out, as the country has steadfastly refused to have any part of it. Further, Republican-controlled Congresses have failed to give him more than a few hundred million for border security, almost all of it earmarked for improvements to existing sections of the border fence.