Sunday November 29th, 2020 12:28PM

The Latest: Pence affirms lasting commitment to build wall

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump and the partial government shutdown (all times local):

1:25 p.m.

Vice President Mike Pence is pledging that the Trump administration will keep fighting to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Pence made that commitment during what was meant to be a morale-boosting appearance at the Washington headquarters for U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

CBP agents are among the 800,000 federal employees who must work without pay during what is on track to become the longest government shutdown in U.S. history.

Pence told several dozen agents that just as they fight daily for the nation's security, "this president and this administration will keep fighting to build the wall."


1:15 p.m.

Just a few Republicans have joined Democrats as the House has voted to reopen some agencies closed by the partial federal shutdown.

The measure isn't expected to go anywhere in the GOP-controlled Senate, and the closure is continuing for a record-tying 21st day.

The vote shows that Republicans, at least in the House, remain largely behind President Donald Trump's demand for $5.7 billion in taxpayer money to start building his proposed border wall with Mexico.

The House voted by a near party-line 240-179 on Friday to reopen the Interior Department, the Environmental Protection Agency and some smaller agencies.

Ten Republicans joined all voting Democrats by voting "yes." The 10 defections were similar to the number of House Republicans who've supported other spending measures.

The government also closed for 21 days beginning in December 1995.


12:30 p.m.

U.S. officials say the Pentagon is finalizing plans that would send hundreds of additional active-duty troops to the U.S.-Mexico border for several more months to support the Department of Homeland Security and install another 160 miles (257 kilometers) of concertina wire in Arizona and California.

Details are being worked out, but the plan likely would extend the military's border mission though the end of September. The mission is separate from President Donald Trump's campaign to build a border wall but is designed to bolster security.

Officials said Friday the installation of the wire barrier is not expected to take that long, so troops doing that would be finished long before September.

There currently are 2,350 active-duty troops assigned to the border mission, which was slated to end Jan. 31.

The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss details not yet approved.

—Associated Press writer Lolita C. Baldor.


12:10 p.m.

The House has voted to ensure that all federal employees will be paid retroactively after the partial government shutdown ends.

The bill passed Friday requires that all employees, including those who have been furloughed, be paid as soon as possible once the government reopens.

The Senate approved the bill unanimously Thursday. The bill now heads to President Donald Trump, who is expected to sign it.

More than 800,000 workers, more than half of them still on the job, missed their first paycheck Friday under the stoppage, which began Dec. 22.


8:55 a.m.

Miami International Airport is closing a terminal this weekend due to the partial government shutdown because security screeners have been calling in sick at twice the airport's normal rate.

Friday marks the first day screeners will miss a paycheck, and airport spokesman Greg Chin says there's a concern there won't be enough workers to handle all 11 checkpoints during normal hours over the weekend.

Chin says Terminal G will close at 1 p.m. Saturday, reopen for flights Sunday morning and close again at 1 p.m. that day.

The terminal serves United Airlines along with smaller carriers. Its closure means restaurants and shops that depend on departing flights also will close.

Chin told The Miami Herald that some passengers have complained about longer waits but there have been no abnormal security delays.


8:15 a.m.

Puerto Rico's representative in Congress says it is "unacceptable" for President Donald Trump to consider taking billions of dollars slated for disaster response in the U.S. territory to help build a border wall. She said to do so amounts to "playing with our pain and hope."

A congressional official said Thursday the White House has directed the Army Corps of Engineers to look for billions of dollars earmarked last year for disaster response for Puerto Rico and other areas that could be diverted to a border wall.

Jenniffer Gonzalez said Friday that the island still has not received $2.5 billion in funds even though more than a year has passed since Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico as a Category 4 storm.

She says, "To use this now as a political football is not what U.S. citizens in Puerto Rico deserve."

The money was set aside for projects including channeling rivers to prevent flooding, which has long been a widespread problem for the U.S. territory, especially during the Atlantic's six-month hurricane season.


12:35 a.m.

President Donald Trump is edging closer to declaring a national emergency to fund his long-promised border wall, as pressure mounts to find an escape hatch from the three-week impasse that has closed parts of the government, leaving hundreds of thousands of workers without pay.

Some 800,000 workers, more than half of them still on the job, will miss their first paycheck on Friday under the stoppage, and Washington is close to setting a dubious record for the longest government shutdown in U.S. history. That left some Republicans on Capitol Hill increasingly uncomfortable with Trump's demands.

Asked about the plight of those going without pay, the president shifted the focus, saying he felt badly "for people that have family members that have been killed" by criminals who came over the border.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP Business
© Copyright 2020
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
APNewsBreak: US approved thousands of child bride requests
APNewsBreak: According to data provided to The Associated Press, the U.S. approved thousands of requests by men to bring child and teenage brides from other countries. In one case, a 49-year-old man applied for admission for a 15-year-old girl.
1:44PM ( 4 minutes ago )
Bloomberg says he'd self-fund possible 2020 White House bid
Bloomberg says if he runs for president, he'll pay for it himself
1:38PM ( 9 minutes ago )
The Latest: Pence affirms lasting commitment to build wall
Vice President Mike Pence is pledging that the Trump administration will keep fighting to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border
1:30PM ( 18 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Trump administration eyes disaster money to fund border wall
As government shutdown drags on, Trump administration eyes disaster money to fund border wall
12:57PM ( 51 minutes ago )
AG pick to reassure senators he backs sentencing overhaul
AG nominee faces questions about his push for harsher sentences and more prisons in 1990s
12:43PM ( 1 hour ago )
Supreme Court says Justice Ginsburg's recovery is 'on track'
The Supreme Court says Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's recovery from cancer surgery is "on track" and no further treatment is required
12:41PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
EU offers UK helping hand, but no reopening of Brexit deal
A top European Union official says the bloc is trying to help Britain's prime minister avoid a no-deal departure of the U.K. from the bloc, but insists there cannot be any renegotiation of the Brexit deal
11:14AM ( 2 hours ago )
Greek state school teachers clash with riot police in Athens
Protesting Greek school teachers have clashed with police in central Athens during a demonstration against government plans for hiring new teachers
11:13AM ( 2 hours ago )
Prominent figure quits German far-right party for new group
A once-prominent figure in the far-right Alternative for Germany has left the party after a falling-out and has reportedly founded a new group
9:44AM ( 4 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
Poland: Huawei exec, Polish security expert spied for China
Poland has arrested a Chinese businessman who was a director at tech firm Huawei and a former Polish cybersecurity expert for allegedly spying on Poland for China
12:52PM ( 56 minutes ago )
What the government shutdown means for your mortgage
See how the government shutdown is directly impacting homeowners and homebuyers alike and what you can do
12:16PM ( 1 hour ago )
Stocks slip but remain on track for another winning week
Stocks slipped in Friday morning trading, as falling oil prices dragged down energy companies, but the S&P 500 remained on track to close out its third straight winning week following a brutal December
12:12PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Business
Bloomberg says he'd self-fund possible 2020 White House bid
Bloomberg says if he runs for president, he'll pay for it himself
1:38PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Bill on federal workers' back pay in shutdown heads to Trump
Lawmakers have tried to reassure federal employees that Congress is aware of the financial hardship they are enduring from the partial government shutdown
1:23PM ( 25 minutes ago )
Avalanche, accidents add snow-related deaths in Europe
Heavy snowfall in the Balkans has closed down schools in some areas, left remote villages cut off and disrupted traffic and power supplies throughout the region
1:23PM ( 25 minutes ago )
The Latest: Canada grants asylum to Saudi woman
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada will grant asylum to a Saudi woman fleeing alleged family abuse
1:15PM ( 33 minutes ago )
Federal workers get $0 pay stubs as shutdown drags on
Families are making tough decisions as 800,000 federal employees miss their first paycheck Friday because of the government shutdown
1:11PM ( 37 minutes ago )