Pelosi says Democrats will not back short-term funding bill on Thursday

  • Pelosi says Democrats will not back short-term funding bill on Thursday

Pelosi says Democrats will not back short-term funding bill on Thursday

The idea is to buy time for negotiations on unfinished bipartisan business on Capitol Hill, including the budget, a key children's health program and aid to hurricane-slammed Puerto Rico.

Given the calendar and the amount of time needed to finalize a broad spending package, another stopgap spending measure will be needed just before Christmas.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer said they've agreed to meet on Thursday with President Donald Trump and Republican Congressional leaders to discuss a year-end spending deal as a possible government shutdown looms as early as Saturday.

Democrats, whose votes will be required to pass the temporary spending measure in the Senate, are pushing their own priorities, including legislative protections for young people brought to the United States illegally as children and healthcare subsidies that Trump has ended for low-income people.

Both sides are expressing optimism about averting a government shutdown at midnight Friday, when the current spending authority expires, and later this month.

"I'd really like to know what you expect to accomplish in the next two weeks when we haven't been able to accomplish anything in the last two months", said Representative Nita M. Lowey of NY, the top Democrat on the House Appropriations Committee.

On Thursday, Schumer said Trump seemed to be rooting for a shutdown and if one occurs, "it will fall on his shoulders".

He says: "We're all here as a very friendly, well-unified group". Democrats haven't said how they will vote, but a Democratic aide said their vote would depend on wider budget talks making progress.

The Oval Office sit-down will come after Pelosi of California and Schumer of NY pulled out of a planned meeting on November 28 after Trump tweeted, "I don't see a deal!" If Congress cannot agree on a measure to continue the funding, parts of the federal government could shut down. "I'm confident we'll walk out of this with it".

Trump claimed the minority party wants illegal immigrants "pouring into our country" and they'll close the government's doors during the holiday season to keep the borders open.

Late on Wednesday, a bill advanced in the House of Representatives to extend current federal funding through December 22, with the chamber expected to take up the bill on Thursday.

Besides temporarily financing the government, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said the short-term measure would make cash available to several states that are running out of money for the Children's Health Insurance Program.

While a partial government shutdown would keep emergency services and the military mainly operating, thousands of operations would be suspended, such as the operation of national parks.

Trump had been asked as he finished a statement to the press about the possibility that spending authorization would run out, forcing the federal government to send all essential workers home until they approve a bill.

Meadows says they want to avoid distractions from the tax bill Republicans plan to push through Congress this month.

Trump's warning came as some of the most conservative members of the House of Representatives pushed for increases in military spending along with either a freeze or reduction in domestic programs.