A bipartisan group of senators has come together to work on a package that would reopen the federal government for the next three weeks to allow time to hammer out a potential agreement on immigration — but the Trump White House is apparently not on board.
CNN’s Manu Raju, by way of CNN White House reporter Abby Philips, reports that the White House “is lobbying Republican Senators not to sign a letter asking Trump to reopen the government for three weeks while they work on an immigration deal.”
Trump aides fear that the letter, which is being drafted by Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Chris Coons (D-DE), would break the “unity” that the Republican Party has shown so far in the shutdown fight, even though multiple Republican lawmakers so far have voted with House Democrats to reopen parts of the federal government and several GOP senators have said they want to reopen the government without funding the president’s border wall.
Per @mkraju, the WH is lobbying Republican Senators not to sign a letter asking Trump to reopen the gov for 3 weeks while they work on an immigration deal. The letter is being worked on by Graham and Coons, but would represent a break in the "unity" Trump has been touting.
— Abby D. Phillip (@abbydphillip) January 16, 2019
Graham in the past has floated reopening the federal government for three weeks and has encouraged the president to build the wall by declaring a national emergency if no deal gets struck. Trump has so far rejected this course of action.