Developing now, Friday, Jan. 25, 2019
TRUMP MULLS THE NATIONAL EMERGENCY OPTION: President Trump is considering the option of declaring a national emergency to force the construction of his border wall and the partial government shutdown, a White House adviser told Fox News ... In an interview with Laura Ingraham on "The Ingraham Angle" Thursday night, Mercedes Schlapp, the White House director of strategic communications, said it is clear Congress will not come up with a solution to effectively address the illegal entry at the border and that the president is “seriously considering other options,” which include declaring a national emergency.
The White House has reportedly begun drafting a proclamation to declare the emergency and found the funds to construct the barrier. The move – all but certain to draw a legal fight -- could, in theory, allow the president to circumvent Congress and end the budget stalemate. Trump has said he wants $5.7 billion for the project.
News of Trump's possible national emergency declaration comes as the Senate on Thursday rejected dueling Democratic and GOP proposals to end the ongoing partial government shutdown. The impasse, now entering its 35th day, is the longest in U.S. history, and approximately 800,000 federal workers on Friday will miss another paycheck.
After the bills failed in the Senate, White House signaled that a "large down payment" on border wall funding would be enough to end the shutdown. They even suggested that Trump would request less than $5.7 billion for the wall. But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who has rejected any kind of funding for a wall, dismissed the proposal as a nonstarter.
Pelosi has canceled Friday session of Congress and sent lawmakers home for a “three-day weekend,” drawing outrage from House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. Still, the pressure on both parties will continue to mount as federal workers continue to go without pay.