The Latest: Schumer says end to wall money bid ends shutdown

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the government shutdown (all times local):

1:15 p.m.

The Senate’s top Democrat says the partial government shutdown could end immediately if President Donald Trump abandons his demand for money for a border wall with Mexico.

Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York spoke almost directly to Trump from the Senate floor, saying, “If you want to open the government, you must abandon the wall.”

Democrats are refusing to accept Trump’s $5 billion demand for wall funds. They’re offering to keep spending at existing levels of $1.3 billion for border fencing and other security.

Schumer says Democrats are open to any proposals that don’t include the wall. He blames the shutdown on Trump’s “temper tantrum” after the president refused to sign an earlier bipartisan bill to keep government running.

Congress is in a rare Saturday session amid the standoff as talks continue.

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12:20 p.m.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says it’s up to President Donald Trump and Democrats to reach a deal to end the partial government shutdown.

The impasse is over Trump’s demand for billions of dollars in money for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

As the Senate returned to work Saturday, McConnell said he hoped an agreement could be reached “sooner rather than later.”

He says any deal to re-open government would need Democratic support for passage and Trump’s signature to be signed into law.

Talks are continuing, but there’s no clear path forward.

Trump wants $5.7 billion for the border wall with Mexico. Democrats are only willing to keep funding at existing levels, $1.3 billion, for border fencing and security, but not the wall.

One-quarter of the federal government shuttered beginning Saturday.

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12:10 p.m.

The House and Senate are gaveling back in for a rare weekend session amid a partial government shutdown over President Donald Trump’s demand for billions of dollars for a border wall.

Talks continue between congressional leaders and the White House, according to a Senate Democratic aide. But no votes are scheduled Saturday.

Lawmakers are being told they’ll have 24 hours to return to Washington to act on any proposals.

Democrats continue to resist Trump’s $5.7 billion “concrete wall.” They have proposed keeping existing funding, $1.3 billion, for border fencing and other security.

Trump has given shifting views on the shutdown. Both parties say the president must sign off on any agreement before votes.

Vice President Mike Pence and other White House officials met late Friday with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, House Speaker Paul Ryan and others.

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8:50 a.m.

Negotiations are expected to continue in Washington to try to end the partial government shutdown, and the House and Senate have scheduled rare Saturday sessions.

White House budget chief Mick Mulvaney sent agency heads a memorandum telling them to “execute plans for an orderly shutdown.” He says Trump administration officials are hopeful the shutdown “will be of short duration.”

Congressional Democrats are refusing to give in to President Donald Trump’s demands for $5 billion to start building the U.S.-Mexico border wall he’s long promised.

The gridlock blocks money for nine of 15 Cabinet-level departments and dozens of agencies, including the departments of Homeland Security, Transportation, Interior, Agriculture, State and Justice.

The lack of funds will disrupt many government operations and the routines of 800,000 federal employees.

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8:40 a.m.

Christmas-season gridlock has descended on the nation’s capital just before the holiday, with a partial government shutdown over a dispute about money for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Congressional Democrats are refusing to accede to President Donald Trump’s demands for $5 billion to start erecting his long-promised barrier. The stalemate comes as Republicans are in the waning days of their two-year reign controlling government.

Vice President Mike Pence, Trump son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner and White House budget chief Mick Mulvaney left the Capitol late Friday after hours of bargaining with congressional leaders produced no apparent compromise.

Mulvaney sent agency heads a memorandum telling them to “execute plans for an orderly shutdown.”

With negotiations expected to resume, the House and Senate scheduled rare Saturday sessions.

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