Trump border wall budget could lead to partial government shutdown, senior Republican warns

Kristin Hugo

The US government could be forced into a partial shutdown over Donald Trump’s desire for a wall on the Mexico border, a senior Republican has warned.

Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard Shelby, an Alabama Republican met with the president alongside Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConell.

“I said we shouldn’t ever want to shut down the government,” Mr Shelby said

“I think maybe he agreed, I don’t know,” he said of Mr Trump’s response. “We had a nice discussion,” he added, describing Trump as being “in a good mood.”

Mr Trump has previously said he may “very well be willing to shut down the government” if he does not get the money he wants from Congress. Specifically, Mr Trump wants $5 billion to start construction in 2019. Ultimately, the wall would cost significantly more, but it's unclear exactly how much.

The House of Representatives passed a $5bn bill, but the Senate has agreed to $1.6bn as part of a stopgap bill.

The current budget is set to expire on 7 December.

Mr Trump has threatened government shutdowns before, but his fellow Republicans had warned him against it. GOP leaders said that a shutdown would ultimately hurt the Republican Party.