Last night, the House of Representatives passed a stopgap funding bill that includes $5.7 billion earmarked for Trump’s beloved border wall. The House voted for the bill despite knowing it will almost certainly be rejected by the Senate, which passed a similar funding bill on Wednesday that doesn’t include money for the wall, meaning that we’re rapidly heading towards a shutdown of the federal government.
The vote, which passed 217 to 185, came after President Donald Trump indicated on Thursday that he wouldn’t sign any bill that didn’t include $5 billion for the border wall—which, as he tweeted, will in fact be made of steel slats.
“Any measure that funds the government has to include border security—not for political purposes, but for our country,” Trump said during a signing ceremony at the White House.
The Senate must vote on the House’s bill by midnight tonight. If they vote against the bill, as is expected, Trump says he will partially shut down the federal government for the third time this year.
Trump is scheduled to depart for a 16-day Christmas vacation at the “winter White House” of Mar-a-Lago, but Press Secretary Sarah Sanders says that if the shutdown goes forward, the president will remain in Washington. (He’s not gonna like that.)
If the shutdown continues until January 3, when Democrats take over the House of Representatives, it will be the House Democrats who will need to make a deal with Trump and a Republican-controlled Senate to reopen the government.
To give Republicans a taste of what they’d be dealing with in that scenario, Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez fired shots on Twitter after the announcement, asking how the House found $5.7 billion for a wall while neglecting other essential government functions.
“What if we instead added $5.7B in teacher pay?” Ocasio-Cortez wrote. “Or replacing water pipes? Or college tuition/prescription refill subsidies? Or green jobs? But notice how no one’s asking the GOP how they’re paying for it.”