Senate bills to re-open government fail

Senator Bill Cassidy says compromise is the only way forward

January 24, 2019 - 7:21 pm

(WWL.com) - Two competing Senate bills to re-open the government both failed to obtain the 60 votes needed to pass, and now we’re into day 33 of the historically long shutdown. Federal workers are nearing a full month without pay, and with rent coming due, many of their lives are getting precarious. Senator Bill Cassidy says the only way forward is a compromise between the two party leaders.

“God bless those TSA agents working without pay, we have to get those folks paid, along with those other folks who are working without pay. It now comes down to a negotiation between President Trump and Nancy Pelosi.”

One measure, would have temporarily re-opened the government through February 8th, the other was a long term fix that, was the President’s offer of legal protections for “Dreamers” in return for 5.7 billion to fund additional border wall. Cassidy voted against the first, and for the second bill.

But, Cassidy is optimistic that a deal is coming in the near future. He says there’s signs that democratic anti-wall resolve is beginning to crack, and some lawmakers from across the aisle are looking to make a deal…

“If you listen to us, we’re all saying the same thing, we need to protect our southern border. We may disagree on the number of miles of barriers, but we all agree that barriers are part of that.”

Senator John Kennedy is pursing legislation to get unpaid Coast Guard members a check before the 1st, and Cassidy says if the deadlock continues, pursuing piecemeal legislative efforts to get federal workers paid may be necessary.

“I would rather a holistic response, but in the meantime if we do not get a counter offer (from Speaker Pelosi), I’ll continue to put up proposals that continue to work towards that end.”

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