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Mood Sours on Border Security Talks

The acting White House chief of staff issues a warning
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 10, 2019 4:30 PM CST
In this July 11, 2018, file photo Mick Mulvaney, acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), and Director of the Office of Management, listens during a news conference at the Department...   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)

(Newser) – Bargainers clashed Sunday over whether to limit the number of migrants authorities can detain, tossing a new hurdle before negotiators hoping to strike a border security compromise for Congress to pass this coming week, the AP reports. The White House wouldn't rule out a renewed partial government shutdown if an agreement isn't reached. With the Friday deadline approaching, the two sides remained separated by hundreds of millions of dollars over how much to spend to construct President Donald Trump's promised border wall. But rising to the fore was a related dispute over curbing Customs and Immigration Enforcement, or ICE, the federal agency that Republicans see as an emblem of tough immigration policies and Democrats accuse of often going too far.

Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, in appearances on NBC's Meet the Press and Fox News Sunday, said "you absolutely cannot" eliminate the possibility of another shutdown if a deal is not reached over the wall and other border matters. The White House had asked for $5.7 billion, a figure rejected by the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives, and the mood among bargainers has soured, according to people familiar with the negotiations not authorized to speak publicly about private talks. "You cannot take a shutdown off the table, and you cannot take $5.7 (billion) off the table," Mulvaney told NBC, "but if you end up someplace in the middle, yeah, then what you probably see is the president say, 'Yeah, OK, and I'll go find the money someplace else.'" Click for the full story. (Or read about the "strangest consequence" of the last shutdown.)


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