ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

cloudy-day
35°
Chance of Rain
H 51° L 44°
  • cloudy-day
    35°
    Current Conditions
    Chance of Rain. H 51° L 44°
  • heavy-rain-day
    51°
    Today
    Chance of Rain. H 51° L 44°
  • cloudy-day
    58°
    Tomorrow
    Cloudy. H 58° L 48°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb news on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb traffic on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb weather on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

National Govt & Politics
Graham urging Trump to reopen government for a few weeks
Close

Graham urging Trump to reopen government for a few weeks

Graham urging Trump to reopen government for a few weeks
Photo Credit: AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin
President Donald Trump attends a roundtable discussion on border security with local leaders, Friday Jan. 11, 2019, in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Graham urging Trump to reopen government for a few weeks

A Republican lawmaker advising President Donald Trump said he is encouraging the president to reopen the government for several weeks to continue negotiating with Democrats over funding for a U.S.-Mexico border wall before the president takes the more drastic step of declaring a national emergency.

But that may be wishful thinking, given that Sen. Lindsey Graham also says Trump still wants to reach a deal for the wall before agreeing to reopen shuttered government departments. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a leading Democratic negotiator, insists that Trump reopen the government first.

The weeks-old standoff over funding led to the partial government shutdown that hit day 23 on Sunday without an end in sight.

"Before he pulls the plug on the legislative option, and I think we're almost there, I would urge him to open up the government for a short period of time, like three weeks, before he pulls the plug, see if we can get a deal," said Graham, a South Carolina Republican. "If we can't at the end of three weeks, all bets are off."

"See if he can do it by himself through the emergency powers. That's my recommendation," added Graham, who has publicly pushed Trump to use his authority to declare a national emergency to build the wall. Such a step would allow Trump to bypass Congress and tap various pots of unspent federal money, including for military construction and disaster relief and from asset seized by law enforcement, to pay for the wall.

Trump has kept Washington on edge over whether he would resort to such a declaration, citing what he says is a "crisis" of drug smuggling and the trafficking of women and children at the border. The president initially sounded as though such a move was imminent, but then pulled back. He has said several times since he first mentioned the idea in public earlier this month that he prefers to try to reach a deal with Congress.

A key question is how much more time is Trump willing to give lawmakers. Graham, who said he and Trump talked by telephone on Sunday morning, said the legislative path "is just about shut off" and blamed Pelosi.

The speaker's office had no immediate comment.

Democrats oppose an emergency declaration but may be powerless to block it. Some Republicans are wary, too, fearing how a future Democratic president might use that authority. Such a move, should Trump ultimately go that route, would almost certainly be challenged in the courts.

Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., called Graham's idea to reopen the government a "great place to start."

"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," Coons said.

Trump has maintained that the border cannot be secured without a wall.

Graham said he thinks Trump is willing to accept the $5.7 billion he has insisted on for the wall, along with some immigration measures Democrats might find acceptable, such as helping immigrants who were illegally brought to the U.S. as children.

Trump has expressed interest in a broader immigration overhaul, but says he first wants the Supreme Court to address the class of immigrants known as "Dreamers." Pelosi also has shown no interest in accepting a wall — she has called it an "immorality" — in exchange for immigration fixes.

And, Trump, who was holed up in the White House as snow blanketed Washington on Sunday, appeared to shoot down Graham's suggestion of a "wall plus" deal, saying on Twitter that even Democrats don't want to make "Dreamers" part of the negotiations.

"The damage done to our Country from a badly broken Border - Drugs, Crime and so much that is bad - is far greater than a Shutdown, which the Dems can easily fix as soon as they come back to Washington!" Trump said in a separate tweet.

The White House has been laying the groundwork for an emergency declaration, feared by members of both parties.

Senate Homeland Security Committee Chairman Ron Johnson, R-Wis., said he would "hate to see" a declaration because then the wall wouldn't get built, presumably because of legal challenges. Democrats voted in the past for border security and should again, he said.

"I actually want to see this wall get built," Johnson said. "I want to keep pressure on Democrats to actually come to the negotiating table in good faith and fund what they have supported in the past."

But Graham, who favors a presidential declaration, said the time for talk is running out.

"It's the last option, not the first option, but we're pretty close to that being the only option," he said.

Graham and Coons spoke on "Fox News Sunday." Johnson appeared on CNN's "State of the Union."

___

For AP's complete coverage of the U.S. government shutdown: https://apnews.com/GovernmentShutdown

Read More

News

  • Pop star Miley Cyrus took to social media Wednesday night to deny rumors that she is pregnant. >> Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth married, reports say 'I am not 'egg-xpecting' but it's 'egg-celent' to hear everyone is 'so happy for us'... We're happy for us too! 'Egg-cited' for this next chapter in our lives... Now can everyone leave me alone and go back to staring at an egg?' Cyrus, 26, tweeted in response to a Daily Mail report that claimed she and husband Liam Hemsworth 'are expecting their first child together.' >> See the tweet here >> Egg photo tops Kylie Jenner post as most-liked Instagram snapshot The post featured an altered photo of the 'Malibu' singer with a smiling egg covering her belly – an apparent reference to an egg photo that went viral this week. >> Read more trending news  Cyrus married the 29-year-old Hemsworth last month.
  • Maine's giant spinning ice disk that quickly gained international fame seems to have met its end. The formation in the Presumpscot River in Greater Portland stopped rotating Wednesday, two days after a video of its mesmerizing movement was widely shared on social media. The roughly 100-yard (91-meter) wide disk is lodged against the river's edge, preventing it from moving. Meteorologist Ryan Breton tells the Portland Press Herald if the disk freezes into place, 'that might be the end of it.' The ice formation is believed to have formed naturally where there's a circular current that creates a whirlpool effect. Social media users compared it to an alien spacecraft and the moon, and ducks used it as a big raft.
  • A star athlete at a high school in Douglas County, Georgia, is being held in jail without bond after police arrested him on murder charges. >> Watch the news report here Police arrested Jalen Morgan, 17, on the Alexander High School campus last week because they said he was part of a conspiracy to commit murder in May of last year. Investigators said seven people were involved, and Morgan, along with his cousin LeAndrea Morgan, acted as the lookouts for the crime. “Two of these individuals had pre-existing issues with each other, and they showed up in an attempt to commit this act,” said Sgt. Jesse Hambrick, with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. WSB-TV’s Tyisha Fernandes learned that the intended target for the crime was not the person shot and killed. The documents say that during the robbery, one of the suspects fired a shot at the intended target – Kenneth McClary – but McClary shot back and killed the suspect. Now, all seven suspects are being held in jail without bond. >> Read more news stories  Police arrested the suspects just a few weeks after the slaying, and last week they arrested the Morgan cousins. They've wrapped the case. “These last two were the last two that they expect, and they’re ready to move forward from there,” Hambrick said. Each suspect is facing several charges, and one is accused of being a gang member. Investigators said he's part of the Bloods. They're saying he committed the crime with the intent to maintain and increase his status as a known gang member.
  • Crews are on site this morning to repair damage caused by a MARTA train derailment.  The derailed cars are still stuck on the tracks more than a day after the accident.  MARTA officials say two cars on an out-of-service train derailed around 9 p.m. Tuesday at the airport station, causing train service to stop on the red and gold lines. No passengers were on board and the rail operator was not hurt.  We're at the scene as crews prepare to bring in a giant crane to the scene and we'll have the impact for travelers, on Channel 2 Action News This Morning Passengers trying to get to the airport must get off at the College Park station, where a shuttle train and buses are taking people back and forth. The agency is investigating what caused the issue. TRENDING STORIES: Forsyth County man charged with plot to attack White House, FBI says High school football star arrested at school on murder charges Boy suspended for unintentionally using counterfeit money in lunch line
  • A Tennessee schoolteacher is accused of sex crimes involving a teen. >> Watch the news report here Jasmine Edmond, 24, was arrested Monday. She is charged with sexual battery by an authority figure. Edmond, who is a teacher at Power Center Academy High School in Memphis, began working at the school in August 2018, according to a letter sent to parents. She taught several different math classes. The alleged incident happened in November 2017, prior to Edmond’s employment with PCA High. She was employed by Shelby County Schools at the time, according to the letter, which was written by PCA High Principal Antonio Ryan. >> On Fox13Memphis.com: Man accused of attacking woman he forcibly held into prostitution, police say Ryan said the school completed a background check on Edmond, but it didn’t show anything about the alleged crime. Edmond is accused of engaging in sexual contact with someone between the ages of 13 and 17. At the time of the unlawful sexual contact, she 'had supervisory power over (the victim) by virtue of her occupational status and used the power to accomplish sexual contact,' according to the indictment. Edmond was released from jail on bond. WHBQ reached out to both Gestalt Community Schools – which operates PCA High – and Shelby County Schools for comment.  SCS confirmed Edmond was placed on administrative leave on March 27, 2018, to conduct an investigation into the allegations. She did not return to the district.  >> Read more news stories  Below is the statement given by SCS officials regarding her arrest: 'Following the reported allegations, the employee was placed on administrative leave on March 27 so that the District and law enforcement could conduct a thorough investigation. This is standard District procedure. The employee did not return to the school for the remainder of the year and is no longer employed by the District.' Gestalt Community Schools also responded with the following statement: 'We were shocked and disappointed when Jasmine Edmond was arrested. She was a new teacher at Power Center Academy, and we performed a thorough background check last summer, which showed no indication of such behavior. She is currently on administrative leave from Gestalt Community Schools pending further investigation. Although we have no knowledge at this time that her behavior impacted any of our scholars, we are doing our own internal due diligence. We will fully assist the Memphis Police Department with their investigation.' Read more here.
  • Phoenix police are looking for answers after a dead newborn baby was discovered at an Amazon fulfillment center Wednesday. According to KTVK, the body was found about 8:30 p.m. in a women's bathroom at the facility on West Lower Buckeye Road, authorities said. Officials said the baby was inside a garbage can, KNXV reported. >> Read more news stories  Amazon called the incident 'terribly sad and tragic' in a statement. 'We are working with local authorities to support their investigation,' the statement read, according to KTVK. 'The safety and wellness of our team is our top priority.' Read more here or here.