White House backs down on US government shutdown threat

Congress Image copyright AFP

US President Donald Trump is backing down on his threat to shut down the government after Democrats refused to grant him the funding to build the wall he wants on the border with Mexico.

The White House has identified other funding sources for the project, says spokeswoman Sarah Sanders.

Mr Trump is seeking $5bn (£3.95bn) from Congress to start work on the wall.

Several federal agencies will shut down on Friday if Congress and the president fail to reach agreement on funding.

Mrs Sanders told Fox News on Tuesday: “We have other ways that we can get to that $5bn.

“At the end of the day we don’t want to shut down the government, we want to shut down the border.”

She added: “There are certainly a number of different funding sources that we’ve identified that we can use, that we can couple with money that would be given through congressional appropriations that would help us get to that $5bn that the president needs in order to protect our border.”

It was not immediately clear what those alternative sources of funding were.

Mr Trump has previously said the wall would cost $25bn.

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