Government shutdown if no funds for border wall: Trump

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Washington, Nov 18 (IANS) US President Donald Trump told the media at the White House here that this would be a "good time" for a government shutdown if he doesn’t get funding from Congress for his border wall.

"I think probably, if I was ever going to do a shutdown over border security, when you look at the caravans, when you look at the mess, when you look at the people coming in, this would be a very good time to do a shutdown," CNN quoted Trump as saying on Saturday.

Trump added, however, that he didn’t think a shutdown would "be necessary, because I think the Democrats will come to their senses".

Congress averted a government shutdown in September by passing a massive spending bill to fund a large portion of the government.

The package did not, however, include money for Trump’s border wall, and Congress passed a shorter-term spending bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security, among other agencies, until December 7.

At a White House event in August, Trump said he was looking for about $5 billion for the wall to cover this fiscal year, which some Democrats have already said they would vote against.

Trump also said on Saturday that the US military will remain at the US-Mexico border "as long as necessary", suggesting that the 5,900 troops deployed to the border could stay there past December 15, the scheduled end of the mission.

The President also touted the "tremendous military force" assigned to the border mission in Texas, Arizona and California, lauding the troops for building "great fences".

"They built great fences. They built a very powerful fence, a different kind of a fence, but very powerful. The fence is fully manned," he said.

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