Monday morning news: December 31, 2018

Government shutdown set to stretch into the new year » Washington will ring in the new year with parts of the federal government still shut down. That as Democrats and the White House continue their standoff over funding for a border wall. 

Republican Senator Richard Shelby, who charis the Appropriations Committee told CBS on Sunday…

SHELBY: All of this will end, we don’t know when, in negotiations. It’s not a question of who wins or loses. Nobody’s going to win this kind of game. Nobody wins in a shutdown. We all lose, and we kind of look silly.

The president wants more than $5 billion for a wall and other security measures. But the White House has signaled a willingness to negotiate.

Democrats are offering $1.3 billion in border security funding but not for a wall. And so far, Democratic leaders say they will not negotiate funding for a wall.

Democrats, like New York Congressman Hakeem Jeffries, continue to argue…

JEFFRIES: What Donald Trump and the Republicans want to do is waste $5 billion dollars in taxpayer money on a medieval border wall, that is a 5th century solution to a 21st century problem. 

But White House adviser Kellyanne Conway said walls are effective, but the president’s budget request encompasses much more than that.

CONWAY: It’s not restricted to just a wall, but it’s what CPB says they need. They need technological enhancements, physical barriers, the steel slats the president has tweeted about and talked about.

Coast Guard service members to receive checks despite shutdown » Meantime, despite the shutdown, members of the Coast Guard will receive their paychecks today.

The Coast Guard falls under the Department of Homeland Security, which is one of the departments impacted by the shutdown. But President Trump reportedly intervened, asking his team to find a way to make today’s $75 million payroll for the service.  

The Office of Management and Budget, DHS, and the Coast Guard worked together on a solution. And lawyers concluded that unused funding could be used to pay personnel. The service had enough money from a past appropriation to cover payroll.

But Coast Guard service members will miss their next paycheck on January 15th, if a deal is not in place to end the shutdown before then.

Former top U.S. general in Afghanistan warns against troop cuts » The former top U.S. commander in Afghanistan said Sunday that a major scale back of U.S. troops in Afghanistan is a mistake.

Retired General Stanley McChrystal told ABC’s This Week…

MCCHRYSTAL: I always worried about the confidence of the Afghan people, because at the end of the day, that’s what determines who wins in Afghanistan. And I think we probably rocked them. We rocked them in their belief that we are allies that can be counted on. 

McChrystal said the U.S. has—quote—“basically traded away the biggest leverage point we have.” He said a major withdrawal means the Taliban will feel little pressure to negotiate an end to the war.   

President Trump has reportedly ordered the Pentagon to develop plans to pull out up to half of the 14,000 U.S. troops now serving in Afghanistan by the summer. Outgoing Defense Secretary Jim Mattis mentioned the order in his resignation letter.

The U.S. and NATO formally ended their combat mission there in 2014, but American forces remain, conducting strikes on ISIS and the Taliban while working to train and build the Afghan military.

State set for College football championship » The stage is set for the College Football championship game. Alabama and Clemson will face off once again.

The Crimson Tide knocked out the Oklahoma Sooners over the weekend 45 to 34. While the Clemson Tigers crushed Notre Dame 30 to 3.

Alabama will play Clemson next Monday for the championship in Santa Clara, California. It will be the fourth consecutive year in which those two teams have met in the playoffs, the third time in the championship game.

Aquaman once again tops the weekend box office » At the weekend box office, Aquaman was once again the big fish, netting another $52 million in ticket sales. The DC Comics flick has grossed almost $200 million in its first 10 days.

Meanwhile, Disney’s Mary Poppins Returns held onto second place with another $28 million.

TRAILER: Mary Poppins, you came back. You seem hardly to have aged at all. Really? One never discusses a woman’s age, Michael. I would have hoped I’d taught you better.

And Bumblebee, the latest installment in the Transformers franchise, once again finished third with another $21 million.

You can find WORLD’s reviews of current films—along with ratings and content information—at

(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) The Capitol is seen on a rainy morning in Washington, Friday, Dec. 28, 2018, during a partial government shutdown.

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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