No end for government shutdown after White House meeting

US President Donald Trump greets US troops after speaking during an event with US military personnel at Yokota Air Base at Fussa in Tokyo

As garbage piles up in Washington, DC due to government shutdown, US President Donald Trump said he's prepared to wait "as long as it takes" for border wall funding.

The Democratic package to end the shutdown would include one bill to temporarily fund the Department of Homeland Security at current levels - with $1.3 billion for border security, far less than the $5 billion Trump has said he wants for the wall - through February 8 as talks continued.

"I don't think any particular progress was made today", McConnell told reporters - hinting that shutdown could last further into the future.

"She'll cut your head off and you won't even know you're bleeding", Alexandra Pelosi said of her mother as Berman and co-anchor Alisyn Camerota laughed.

President Trump on Wednesday torched a compromise that his own vice president floated with Democrats last month to stave off a government funding lapse, saying $2.5 billion in border security spending was insufficient as he renewed calls for $5 billion for his border wall amid a shutdown that has stretched into its 12th day.

It was unclear if the meeting would lead to a breakthrough in the standoff over a funding dispute that centers of Trump's demand that $5 billion in funding for a wall on the Mexican border to be part of any spending measure. He called the border a "sieve", rebutted Democratic complaints that a wall was immoral, provided an estimate of the US illegal immigrant population far higher than the figures most experts cite and made disputed comments about progress toward building a wall.

"The United States needs a physical barrier", Trump said at a meeting with his cabinet on Wednesday.

He described border officials as "very tough" at keeping immigrants out.

Trump himself seemed to shrug off any urgency to bring a close to the shutdown, which has kept hundreds of thousands of federal workers at home, shut down some services and left national parks in disarray. Pelosi said in October that demanding them "is one of the first things we'd do".

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"We are giving the Republicans the opportunity to take yes for an answer", she wrote in a letter to colleagues.

Acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan (R) and Acting Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt attend a Cabinet meeting on day 12 of the partial US government shutdown at the White House in Washington, US, January 2, 2019.

During the campaign, he promised a "great, great" wall made of reinforced concrete that would rise 30 feet or more and extend so far underground that it would be impossible to tunnel underneath. McConnell spokesperson Donald Stewart said Senate Republicans would not take action without Trump's backing.

Schumer said he implored Trump to reopen the government while they debated their differences over the border wall.

For Democrats, that means they will not put anything on the table beyond the current $1.3 billion for border security.

Fox News digital politics editor Chris Stirewalt said on "The Daily Briefing" that the Trump administration's demands for border wall funding aren't about money. But Republican leaders in the House refused to hold a vote on the measure.

The shutdown began December 22. At the same time, administration officials said Trump was in no rush for a resolution to the impasse.

White House officials, including the departing chief of staff, had indicated that Trump's signature campaign pledge to build the wall would not be fulfilled as advertised. It would provide money through the remainder of the fiscal year, to September 30.

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