President Donald Trump last night said the United States could do with a “good shutdown” of its government to fix the “mess” that had transpired in Washington.
He urged Republicans to consider forcing a shutdown in September and called for a change to Senate rules in an attempt to get funding for his policies including building a wall on the Mexican border.
Mr Trump expressed frustration that, despite Republicans holding both houses in Congress and the White House, they had been forced to submit to Democrat demands in passing a spending bill worth $1.1 trillion.
That bill averted an imminent government shutdown and kept it funded until September 30.
It included an unprecedented extra $120 million for the cost of protecting Mr Trump and his family.
The Secret Service will receive an extra $60 million including $23 million for providing increased security at Trump Tower in New York.
Another $60 million will be available for reimbursing local police forces guarding Trump Tower, and Mr Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.
Security costs for the Trump presidency are expected to far outstrip for his predecessor. According to monitoring group Judicial Watch, President Barack Obama cost a total of $97 million over eight years.
The spending bill required 60 votes in the 100-strong Senate. Republicans hold a slim majority of 52 seats meaning Democrats had the option to filbuster if they did not get concessions.
Both parties eventually agreed on a bill which contained no funds for Mr Trump’s border wall, half what he wanted for a renewed military build up, but included increases Democrats wanted for medical research and education, along with continued funding for the women’s healthcare provider Planned Parenthood.
Mr Trump, writing on Twitter, stated: “Our country needs a good ‘shutdown’ in September to fix mess!”
“The reason for the plan negotiated between the Republicans and Democrats is that we need 60 votes in the Senate which are not there! We either elect more Republican Senators in 2018 or change the rules now to 51 percent.”
However, many Republicans were reluctant to back Mr Trump’s call for to change in the rules to a straight majority vote in the Senate, eliminating filibustering, a move known as the “nuclear option”.
Mr Trump claimed that the spending bill had been an “under the radar” victory for Republicans.
Talking at the White House he stated: “We’ve ended years of painful cuts to our military and achieved a $21 billion increase in defence spending.”
“After years of partisan bickering and gridlock this bill is a clear win for the American people. We brought lawmakers together from both sides for a budget that funds the rebuilding of the US military, makes historic investments in border security, and provides healthcare for our miners and school choice for our disadvantaged children.”
Text source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk
Image source: https://static.independent.co.uk/s3fs-public/styles/article_small/public/thumbnails/image/2017/05/02/14/gettyimages-675477134.jpg