Trump Concedes to Temporarily End Shutdown, Without Wall Funding
EghtesadOnline: US President Donald Trump conceded Friday to mounting pressure that he reopen the federal government, agreeing to a temporary funding measure that would allow federal employees to return to work but that does not include the billions of dollars in border wall funding he's spent the past month demanding.
The outcome of the 35-day standoff leaves Trump politically chastened, CNN reported.
Democrats have insisted since December that he sign a measure reopening the government before they sit for talks on border wall funding. After weeks of resistance, Trump agreed to just that on Friday, rendering the past month of stalemate a futile exercise in brinkmanship that left hundreds of thousands of federal workers unpaid and anxious.
However, in his Rose Garden remarks, Trump did not appear conciliatory nor did he concede defeat; instead, he continued to paint the matter as a national security crisis and said another shutdown is possible if lawmakers cannot agree to new border wall funding, according to Financial Tribune.
"As everyone knows I have a very powerful alternative but I'm not going to use it at this time," Trump said after declaring he'd struck a deal to reopen government.
CNN reported exclusively on Thursday that a national emergency proclamation had been drafted that would allow for potentially billions of federal dollars to be put toward wall construction.
"If we don't get a fair deal from congress, the government will either shut down on February 15 again, or I will use the powers afforded to me under the laws and the constitution of the United States to address this emergency," Trump said. "We will have great security."
Trump spent the past weeks demanding that any measure reopening the government include $5.7 billion in funding for a barrier on the US-Mexico border, which was a signature campaign promise.
The US economy lost at least $6 billion during the partial shutdown of the federal government due to lost productivity from furloughed workers and economic activity lost to outside business, S&P Global Ratings said on Friday.
Democrats emerged proclaiming victory.
"Our unity is our power—and that is maybe what the president underestimated," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters in the Capitol after Trump spoke.
Polls have shown Trump is receiving the overwhelming blame for the shutdown. The latest Washington Post/ABC poll, released in the moments before Trump spoke on Friday, indicated 53% of respondents blamed Trump and the GOP for the shutdown while 34% blamed Pelosi and the Democrats. About 10% said both are equally responsible.