US senators rekindle talks on ending shutdown

US Senate leaders from both parties met Thursday in a renewed bid to end a monthlong shutdown as the White House signalled its openness to a three week government funding bill to allow negotiations over border security to proceed.

After duelling Senate measures to end the shutdown failed, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Minority Leader Chuck Schumer entered into talks about passing a continuing resolution that would fund government for three weeks and includes money for a border barrier.

“The three week CR would only work if there is a large down payment on the wall,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said, after Republican Senator Lindsey Graham briefed the president on the Capitol Hill discussions.

Any funding for a physical barrier would represent a marked shift for Democrats, who had vowed until now to not pay for the wall along the Mexico border. Earlier in the month, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi joked she would be willing to give Trump US$ 1 for it.