Government shutdown negotiations continue ahead of deadline

2 NEWS Washington Bureau

WASHINGTON (WDTN) – All eyes are on Capitol Hill, where a bipartisan group of lawmakers hope to avoid another government shutdown next month.

White House advisor Mercedes Schlapp says as Congress begins debate on a border security bill, President Trump’s demand is simple:

“We know that we’re going to need 5.7 billion dollars,” she says.

Schlapp says that would be enough money to build at least 200 miles of a southern border barrier.

The question now…will Congress agree to spend the money?

A bipartisan group of seventeen lawmakers met for the first time Wednesday to begin negotiations.

Lawmakers admit they are up against a tight deadline, as funding for many government agencies expires February 15th.

The White House says another shutdown is possible if Congress doesn’t fund the border wall, but Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown says he’s confident Congress can reach a deal.

“We can do this bipartisan, we have before, we will again, if the President will let this process work, and support keeping the government open,” he says.

Schlapp says the President is willing to let lawmakers lead the discussions.

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