The United States on Sunday entered the second day of a government shutdown gridlocking Washington that White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney warned could persist into the new year and the next Congress.
A budget agrement to end the partial shutdown – which forced several key agencies to shut down on Saturday – is a distant prospect as Congress adjourned for the weekend ahead of Christmas.
“It’s very possible that this shutdown will go beyond the 28th and into the new Congress,” Mulvaney said of the impasse over funding for the wall that President Donald Trump wants to build on the US-Mexico border.
But while trying to assign blame to the Democrats, Mulvaney, speaking on Fox News Sunday, acknowledged that Trump’s intransigence on the wall was playing a role.
“This is what Washington looks like when you have a president who refuses to sort of go along to get along,” Mulvaney said.
It is the third partial government shutdown of the year, even though Trump’s Republican Party still controls both the House of Representatives and the Senate.
The Democrats will take control of the House on January 3, giving them greater leverage in the shutdown negotiations.
– with reporting by Agence France-Presse