Federal government shutdown enters second week with no resolution in sight

"An all concrete Wall was NEVER ABANDONED", Trump tweeted Monday.

"He was frustrated. It was a huge decision to make ... and frankly there was no system at all for a lot of reasons - palace intrigue and the rest of it - when I got there".

Speaking as a partial government shutdown went into a ninth day due to an impasse over Trump's demands for funding for a wall at the US-Mexico border, Kelly told the Los Angeles Times: "To be honest, it's not a wall".

"For those that naively ask why didn't the Republicans get approval to build the Wall over the a year ago, it is because IN THE SENATE WE NEED 10 DEMOCRAT VOTES, and they will gives us "NONE" for Border Security!", he tweeted.

"Illegal immigrants, overwhelmingly, are not bad people", Kelly told the LA Times, adding that many had been manipulated by traffickers.

On the campaign trail, Trump promised that Mexico would pay for the wall, but Mexico has refused.

A White House official said Democratic Sen.

The president also doubled down on his campaign pledge that Mexico would fund the wall - and suggested in an earlier tweet that he had kept that promise.

Trump is not budging, having panned Democratic offers to keep money at current levels - $1.3 billion for border fencing, but not the wall.

Democratic House leader Nancy Pelosi and President Donald Trump both think they have public sentiment on their side in the battle over a border wall.

"To my Democratic friends, there will never be a deal without wall funding", Graham said Sunday on CNN.

Days before the start of a new Congress - and Trump's first experience with divided government, there were no signs of direct negotiations involving the president, Republicans and Democrats to end the partial closure, affecting hundreds of thousands of increasingly anxious federal workers.

By moving to re-open the government on their terms, they are instead trying to ensure the blame stayed on Trump.

As Republicans relinquish their hold on Congress, and House Speaker Paul Ryan gives up the gavel, the White House is eager for a showdown with Pelosi believing the crisis will tarnish the opening of the new legislative session, and with it, her expected return to the speaker's office.

Pointing to Trump's pledge to build a massive wall along the US border with Mexico - a central campaign promise - Kelly said, "To be honest, it's not a wall", meaning that Trump no longer is calling for a huge concrete structure spanning thousands of miles.

Mr Trump is sticking with his demand for money to build a border wall with Mexico, and Democrats, who take control of the House on January 3, are refusing to give him what he wants. "One more yes, but with me in office, I'll get it built, and Fast!" the president tweeted.

After cancelling a vacation to his private Florida club, Trump spent the weekend at the White House.

Republicans appear to be preparing the ground for Individual 1 to back down to congressional Democrats with some integrity intact. Gates are closed at some national parks, the government won't issue new federal flood insurance policies and in NY, the chief judge of Manhattan federal courts suspended work on civil cases involving US government lawyers, including several civil lawsuits in which Trump himself is a defendant. He also pointed out that Democrats have supported the idea of a wall in the past despite their claims that it is outdated technology.

Mr Trump is holding out for billions in federal funds for a border wall between the USA and Mexico, which Democrats have said they were intent on blocking.

- The shutdown, which began December 22, affects nine of the 15 federal departments, dozens of agencies, and hundreds of thousands of workers.

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