Anther shutdown may be avoided after all! After a stall in negotiations last night, lawmakers in Congress now say that they have reached an “agreement in principle” to avoid a shutdown when the funding deadline arrives this Friday, according to the Washington Post.
The new deal will provide $1.37 billion in funding for “border barriers,” which will be comprised of 55 miles of bollard fencing.
Democrats had some success on their call for a lower number of ICE detention beds—the total will drop from 49,057 to 40,520. They hope that lowering the overall number of beds will prevent ICE from detaining a high number undocumented immigrants who haven’t committed crimes.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell called the Democratic provision “a get-out-of-jail-free card for criminals because the radical left doesn’t like U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.”
So far, it’s unclear whether this deal will please Trump, who has long demanded $5.7 billion to build a wall on the border. Even if he approves of this bill, it doesn’t rule out Trump’s threat to declare a national emergency on the border and order the US Army Corps of Engineers to build the wall themselves.
This evening, Trump spoke at a rally in El Paso, TX, announcing that construction on a border wall was started in the area today. El Paso County today passed a resolution objecting to Trump’s characterization of the area as dangerous.
“Though it is difficult to welcome him to El Paso while he continues to proliferate such untruths, we do welcome him to meet with local officials to become properly informed about our great and safe region,” the resolution says.