The Latest: McConnell says Dems should support his bill

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump and the partial government shutdown (all times local):

8:45 p.m.

Senate leaders have agreed to hold votes on dueling proposals to reopen shuttered federal agencies this week.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has set up the two showdown votes for Thursday, a day before some 800,000 federal workers are due to miss a second paycheck.

One vote will be on his own measure, which reflects President Donald Trump’s offer to trade border wall funding for temporary protections for some immigrants. It was quickly rejected by Democrats.

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The second vote is set for a bill approved by the Democratic-controlled House reopening government through Feb. 8, with no wall money, to give bargainers time to talk.

Both measures are expected fall short of the 60 votes need to pass.

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4:05 p.m.

The Senate will push forward with two votes this week to end the government shutdown, but it’s doubtful either will pass.

First will be President Donald Trump’s proposal to provide $5.7 billion for the U.S.-Mexico border wall, some deportation protections for immigrants and supplemental disaster funds for regions hit by hurricanes and wildfires, in exchange for reopening the federal government.

It’s expected to fail.

After that, senators will vote on a House-passed package that would temporarily reopen the government, through Feb. 8, while providing the $12 billion in disaster funds.

Voting is designed to pressure senators to cross party lines to end the shutdown, now in its 32nd day.

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An estimated 800,000 federal workers are expected to miss another paycheck Friday.

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3:50 p.m.

The Department of Agriculture has announced it will reopen Farm Service Agency offices nationwide to process loans, tax documents and trade aid payments to farmers and ranchers.

The Farm Service Agency had been shuttered since the second week of the shutdown, aside from temporarily reopening select offices last week.

From Jan. 28 through Feb. 1, the offices will be open Monday to Friday. From Feb. 4 through Feb. 8, the offices will be open three days a week. Roughly 9,700 federal workers have been called back to work to staff the offices.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue also announced the deadline for farmers to apply for aid payments to offset their trade losses will be extended to Feb. 14.

USDA says these activities were restored because any lapse “would harm funded programs.”

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3:05 p.m.

Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer says President Donald Trump did not propose a “good faith” proposal to end the government shutdown.

The New York senator said Tuesday that Trump’s offer to protect some immigrants from deportation in exchange for $5.7 billion from Congress to build the border wall with Mexico is “one-sided, harshly partisan and was made in bad faith.”

Senate Democrats are expected to reject the measure when it comes to a vote later this week as the shutdown drags on.

Now in its 32nd day, the shutdown has left some 800,000 federal workers facing another Friday without paychecks.

Schumer says the White House wasn’t “seriously negotiating” with Democrats. He says Trump’s immigration proposals do not reflect earlier bipartisan efforts.

He says, “That’s not ‘The Art of the Deal.'”

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2:10 p.m.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi calls President Donald Trump’s offer to provide some deportation protections for immigrants along with for his $5.7 billion demand for the border wall with Mexico a “nonstarter.”

Pelosi told reporters Tuesday that Trump needs to re-open the government before any negotiations over border security.

As the partial government shutdown stretches to Day 32, the House will push forward more proposals to end it. One measure adds $1 billion more for border security.

The Democratic leader said House has voted more than nine times to re-open government.

Some 800,000 federal employees are poised to miss another paycheck on Friday.

Pelosi said Congress can’t give in to Trump demands “every time he has an objection” and threatens to “hold the employees hostage.”

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1:45 p.m.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says Democrats should get behind his bill to reopen shuttered parts of the government and toughen the nation’s borders.

The Kentucky Republican said Tuesday the legislation he unveiled on the Senate floor should appeal to Democrats who want help for so-called “Dreamer” immigrants. McConnell noted that the bill contains some of those protections. He emphasized it is the only measure before Congress that would reopen the government and which President Donald Trump will sign.

McConnell will try to muscle through the massive bill, which includes $5.7 billion for Trump’s proposed wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. The partial government shutdown is in its 32nd day.

The bill was immediately shot down by Democrats. They insist that the government reopen before any border security talks. They also say the immigration provisions are inadequate.

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12:20 a.m.

President Donald Trump’s proposal to break through the budget deadlock appears to be gaining little traction.

Despite the fanfare of the president’s announcement and the rush to release the legislative package late Monday, voting in Congress is not expected to unfold until later in the week.

Even then it seems doubtful that the measure will pass swiftly.

Democrats say they are unwilling to negotiate any border security funding until Trump reopens the government.

Meanwhile, the impact of the shutdown continues to ripple across the nation as it stretches into its 32nd day.

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

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