In a sudden change of course, President Trump on Friday announced an agreement to temporarily end the 35-day government shutdown that does not include the $5.7 billion he demanded for his border wall.
Negotiations on funding for border security will continue until Feb. 15, a reversal for the president, who had repeatedly insisted he would keep the government closed until Congress came across with the cash he wanted.
“I am very proud to announce today that we have reached a deal to end the shutdown and reopen the federal government,” Trump said during a news conference in the Rose Garden.
He added that he had “a very powerful tool” that he could use, presumably referring to his earlier declaration that he could declare a national emergency, if Congress did not meet his demands over the next three weeks.
He also thanked the 800,000 federal workers who endured the shutdown, insisting that most supported his position on border security, and said that they would be given back pay quickly.
He predicted that he and lawmakers would be able to cut a deal, which would include “barriers or walls” as part of the solution.