Top Republicans Oppose Border "Emergency" As US Shutdown Drags On

US President Donald Trump and others listen to a prayer during a meeting about border security in the Cabinet Room of the White House

More than half of Americans hold President Donald Trump and Republican lawmakers mainly responsible for the ongoing longest partial federal shutdown in the US history, according to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll released on Sunday.

"I do think if we reopen the government, if the president ends this shutdown crisis, we have folks who can negotiate a responsible, modern investment in technology that will actually make us safer", Democratic Senator Chris Coons of DE said on Fox.

In two of his tweets Saturday, Trump pushed back on a media report that his White House was "chaotic" with no plan or strategy to end the shutdown.

Sen. Lindsey Graham says he encouraged Trump during a telephone conversation Sunday to reopen government for a short period to try to negotiate a deal with Democrats to end the impasse. "If we can't at the end of three weeks, all bets are off".

He has also threatened to invoke a national emergency in order to deploy the military to build the wall, essentially circumventing Congress.

"You get people ... saying walls are immoral", Trump said, after ticking off a litany of crimes committed both by and against immigrants. The president initially sounded as though such a move was imminent, but then pulled back. "See if we can get a deal", Graham said.

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But the South Carolina Republican tells "Fox News Sunday" that Trump wants a deal first.

Donald Trump only recently backed away from talk of an emergency declaration. Such a move, should Mr Trump ultimately go down that route, would nearly certainly be challenged in the courts.

Pirro also questioned Mr Trump about a New York Times report that the Federal Bureau of Investigation opened an inquiry into whether the president was secretly working for Russian Federation.

President Donald Trump might not be able to make a deal with dug-in Democrats, but he has a winning formula for 2020, regardless, against Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., according to Newt Gingrich. "As a candidate, this is what he talked about, and if there's any mandate he can claim from his election, it was better border security and keeping this nation safe".

"As an equal branch of government we have the authority to override the President's veto, if that's what he chooses to do", Manchin said.

"It's not about elitism, it's not about separatism, it's not about racism", Milstead said.

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"There's a real risk for Democrats if they go out and they do something to help President Trump, that their own base is going to go after them", Gingrich concluded.

The "wall plus" plan could include an extension of temporary protected status for about 400,000 immigrants in the United States because of disasters back home in El Salvador and elsewhere, and renewable three-year work permits for young, undocumented "Dreamers", he said.

White House officials are expecting a quiet weekend at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Trump campaigned against illegal immigration in 2016 and said a wall is necessary to keep illegal immigrants from entering the country.

"Democrats could solve the Shutdown in 15 minutes!" he said in one tweet, adding in another, "We will be out for a long time unless the Democrats come back from their "vacations" and get back to work". A person familiar with White House thinking said that in meetings this past week, the message was that the administration is in no rush and wants to consider various options.

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