Reporter's Notebook: Will frozen negotiations on border security lead to the next closure of the government?

It took a short time to understand that Border Security Talks were stuck this weekend.

If they were to conclude an agreement, the negotiators and staff would have been . Capitol. They would not have been outside to do their usual weekend activities. Church. Exercise. Virginia wineries. Trips out of the city. Activities for children. Birthday dinners in DC bistros

The situation is blocked. And that's the reason we're talking about uncertainty this week in Washington.

Will border security officials find a way to reach an agreement on border security? Will they avoid a government stop? Is there enough time? Would a pact deserve the signature of President Trump?

The Democrats were unwilling to reach an agreement before Trump delivered his state of the union address on Tuesday. A false hope allowed to enter the talks when Trump did not declare a national emergency in his speech and that the Democrats seemed to want to bend.

This is one of the reasons why the Speaker of the Senate Supply Committee, Richard Shelby, R-Ala. he returned from the White House Thursday afternoon after huddling with Trump.

"It's the most positive meeting I've had with the president," said Shelby. "The trajectory is very positive right now."

. The next morning.

"These olive branches have become thorny bushes," a well-informed source said.

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Said the certainty that a second stop would not be embarrassing for Washington - suggesting that a second ruling condemned the Republicans. However, some Republicans thought that Pelosi was simply trying to convince the GOP to play their hand badly.

Shelby thought Trump would sign a measure to avoid a closure, "if we deal with this in the context we're talking about today." [19659003] However, the Alabama Republican was far from convinced that a shutdown of his operations were out of the question.

"A certainty?" Shelby asked rhetorically. "There is a lot of uncertainty."

White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney said a closure had remained "on the table" during an appearance on Fox News on Sunday. Democrats do not want a stop. But, if there is one, Pelosi and the companies are certainly afraid that voters will blame the Republicans

Until Friday, members of the border security conference committee expressed optimism. But several sources warned Fox News that gaiety frightened them. On Friday afternoon, another central source of the process suggested that they were more pessimistic now than before. Sunday morning everything was dead.

A constant source of cynicism stems from the way negotiators on both sides perceive the president.

It has always been worrying that if negotiators come to an agreement, Trump may still not sign it. Trump can be stormy and unpredictable. Everyone at Capitol Hill remembers what happened in December. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., Thought the White House had announced that the President would sign a short-term spending measure to avoid a shutdown. McConnell put the measure on the floor and the Senate approved the package by voice vote. In the morning, Trump opposed the bill.

The other problem is that the president will not get close to 5,7 billion for a wall or a physical barrier, no matter what you want to call it. In fact, he might not even touch 2 billion. It is more likely that this figure will reach between 1,6 and 1,7 billion dollars for the creation of a border fence - although Fox News has heard numbers well below these numbers.

"It's not going to be good, no matter what they reach and he won" do not sign it, "said a source close to the president.

There are limits to how much money border security participants can spend on the Department of Homeland Security's bill. The total cost of the measurement would likely range from 49 to 50 billion for 2019. If participants really had to blow up their spending, they should reduce their other priorities. This could jeopardize national security.

As one source told Fox News, "you do not have your icebreaker" if you claim more expenses for physical protection.

McConnell blamed Democrats in the House for passing various bills to reopen the government during the closure, decrying the measures as "ballots." However, a similar criticism could be made of the House of Republicans - still in the majority at the end of last year - when they introduced a bill to finance the government and spend 5 $ billions on the wall. Former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Paul Ryan, R-Wis., Has made no provision for tax offsets to meet other domestic security needs. In other words, the GOP bill would have spent money on the wall, potentially at the expense of other national security priorities. ]

One can find a balance by finding a compromise. This is exactly what Democrats and Republicans have tried to do behind the scenes in this conference committee. Remember that many Democrats do not want money spent on a physical barrier at all. But if the Democrats accepted wall funding, they'd better secure something for their dealership.

"As in any negotiation, Republicans want a form of physical barrier. What are we getting in exchange for that? Said Representative Lucille Roybal-Allard, D-Calif.

In exchange, Democrats add restrictions on how to spend money from the physical barrier. They also push the boundaries for internal enforcement, such as the number of ICE agents (Immigration and Customs Enforcement), what ICE agents can do, and ICE beds. Republicans say Democrats want to limit CIE's ability to detain people and bring in hooded criminals

"The wall is a panic for the Democrats," added a Republican source. "We got stuck on an indoor policing cap."

"This weekend will tell us a lot about what it will give," said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Friday.

we are.

McCarthy focused on what Pelosi can offer to avoid a stop. However, if Pelosi wants to succeed, the Democrats and herself will have to get something for a favorable vote.

There are five things to know about Pelosi in this exercise:

1) Pelosi is a former member. of the credits committee. Credits and transactions are in his DNA. She would like to see them reach an agreement. But Pelosi must win a big victory. She hears a lot of noise from the Liberals in her caucus about the performance of ICE.

2) Pelosi must also stick to his non-money position for a "wall". The question is whether Pelosi can remain regardless of the final terminology in the legislation and whether this can be interpreted as a "wall" or not. Fox News has long been informed that the word "wall" might not appear in legislation, although it was something that some Republicans might call "wall". . "

3) Pelosi fought the president. It is a good domestic policy for the speaker. Nevertheless, Pelosi must find the right balance to remain firm on its principles, while remaining open to compromise. She can not seem to be too strident.

4) Pelosi knows it's good for many of his moderate beginners, the Democrats of alternative districts to vote for border security. Many of these Democrats represent battlefield districts. Vote yes on this plan and call the gate at your leisure.

5) Pelosi is also under the microscope of House's Democratic recruit. They are a different breed. All are not liberal either. Many do not want to see another stop. Some are ready to put themselves in the president's shoes. But at the same time, they also want to move things forward and seek a compromise. First year students could lobby to get the "yes". They want voters to see them as "problem solvers".

As is always the case in these negotiations, the final result will depend on the accuracy of the calculation. Bring together the right mix of Democrats and Republicans to support a package. Any final arrangement would probably require votes in the middle. Marginal legislators - from left to right and right - would probably oppose legislation. Nevertheless, legislators from both parties can vote in favor of a favorable vote.

In the absence of agreement, the parties may need to approve an interim spending bill (known as the CR, abbreviation for "Continuing Resolution"). finance the government. Such a plan only raises all expenses to current levels. It is possible that credit holders could split the measure - by taking the six spending bills for which there is an agreement and turning them into "new" bills - and by simply doing a ROE for DHS. But, a CR for all bills is bad for Democrats. They have won many domestic political victories in these measures. A CR for everything means that Democrats leave money for their programs on the table. This could be an incentive for the Democrats to negotiate.


So we are turning to the next weekend. Government funding expires at 23h59: 59. And Friday. Will key lawmakers and staff engage in typical weekend activities because the government is open? Or are they going to do these things because there is nothing to discuss and the impasse persists?

The only certainty that currently prevails in Washington is uncertainty.

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