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Friday News Roundup - Domestic

TOPSHOT - A sign is displayed on a government building that is closed because of a US government shutdown in Washington, DC, on December 22, 2018.
TOPSHOT - A sign is displayed on a government building that is closed because of a US government shutdown in Washington, DC, on December 22, 2018.

On Saturday, President Donald Trump made good on his promise to shut down the government over funding for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. When asked how long the partial shutdown might last, he responded, “Whatever it takes.”

Congress has since returned to session, but a resolution seems distant.

Politico reports:

Aides in both parties say they see little reason to believe anyone is budging over the funding of President Donald Trump’s border wall. Party leaders are now gaming out how the new Democratic House will react to a shutdown affecting a quarter of the government, and there are increasing worries that the funding lapse will persist for weeks, potentially deep into January.

Both the Senate and House are scheduled to be in on Thursday afternoon, but no votes are expected and it’s unclear how many lawmakers will be back in town during a holiday week. It’s possible that neither chamber will vote again until Jan. 3, when Democrats assume the House majority.

This is the third shutdown of President Trump’s presidency. Who’s affected this time?

According to the president, “most of the people not getting paid are Democrats.” But many federal workers have set the record straight about the impact of shutdowns across the aisle and throughout the different branches of government.

— Hurricane Potty (@HurricanePotty) December 26, 2018

— Katy⚓ (@katyjb88) December 24, 2018

But this dispute isn’t the only immigration-related issue making headlines. On Christmas Eve, 8-year-old Felipe Gómez Alonzo, a detained migrant child from Guatemala, died after doctors had diagnosed him with a common cold. He’s the second minor to die in the custody of Border Patrol this month — once again raising questions about the care of undocumented immigrants at the border.

From The Washington Post:

The deaths have shaken Border Patrol agents, migrants and advocates and ignited fresh concerns that a political impasse over border security is endangering children. Federal officials called the deaths a tragedy, noting that until this month no child had died in border custody for more than a decade, and said the Department of Homeland Security is investigating. Six adults died in CBP custody in 2018, officials said.

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen called Felipe’s death “deeply concerning and heartbreaking.” She said the agency will adopt a “series of extraordinary protective measures,” including having the CDC investigate the surge in “sick children” crossing the border.

Will conditions at the border actually improve?

We’ll get to all that and more on the last Friday News Roundup of 2018.

Text by Kathryn Fink.


Ron Elving, Senior editor and correspondent, NPR; @nprrelving

Alexandra Jaffe, Correspondent, VICE News Tonight on HBO; @ajjaffe

David Priess, Chief Operating Officer of the Lawfare Institute, best known for the national security website LawfareBlog.com; author, “How to Get Rid of a President: History’s Guide to Removing Unpopular, Unable, or Unfit Chief Executives”; Former CIA Officer; @DavidPriess

For more, visit https://the1a.org.

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