White House, Democrats continue standoff on border wall and government funding » A day after President Trump and Democratic leaders traded barbs on national television, another bipartisan meeting on Wednesday about the ongoing government shutdown went nowhere fast.
President Trump tweeted: “Just left a meeting with Chuck and Nancy, a total waste of time.”
The president referring there to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Schumer said Wednesday…
SCHUMER: When Leader Pelosi said she didn’t agree with the wall, he just walked out and said we have nothing to discuss.
Democrats once again demanded President Trump sign a funding bill to reopen the government without funding for a border wall. The president said he asked Pelosi and Schumer if he agreed to their funding bill now, would they agree to increase funding for a wall within 30 days, to which Pelosi responded “no.”
Vice President Mike Pence told reporters…
PENCE: In this brief meeting, we heard once again that Democratic leaders are unwilling to even negotiate to resolve this partial government shutdown or address the crisis at our southern border.
President Trump is expected to visit the southern border in Texas today to once again make his case for a wall.
Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein resigning » Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein is reportedly planning to leave his position as soon as the Senate confirms President Trump’s nominee for attorney general, assuming it does.
Last month the president announced William Barr as his pick to replace former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who resigned in November.
Barr’s confirmation hearing is scheduled for next week, and he could be in the job by early February.
The White House says Rosenstein is leaving on his own. Press Secretary Sarah Sanders …
SANDERS: I don’t think there’s any willingness by the president or White House to push him out. My guess is that he is making room for the new attorney general to build that team that he wants around him.
Rosenstein appointed Robert Mueller in 2017 to head the Justice Department’s Russia probe after Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself.
If confirmed, Barr would take control of the investigation, likely during a critical time when the special counsel’s office is expected to report its findings to the Justice Department. Barr has made comments critical of the probe and is expected to face tough questions about that from Senate Democrats.
Trump: I’ve ordered FEMA to halt funds to CA for wildfires “unless they get their act together” » President Trump said Wednesday that he’s ordered FEMA to stop sending funds for California wildfires unless the state changes course. WORLD Radio’s Sarah Schweinsberg reports.
SARAH SCHWEINSBERG, REPORTER: The president tweeted that—his words: “Billions of dollars are sent to the State of California for forest fires that, with proper forest management, would never happen. Unless they get their act together, which is unlikely, I have ordered FEMA to send no more money. It is a disgraceful situation in lives & money!”
That came in response to calls by the state’s new governor, Gavin Newsom, to increase federal funds for forest management. Newsom co-signed a letter, along with the governors of Oregon and Washington, asking the Trump administration to “double the investment” in forest management.
Newsom’s letter said his state has spent more than a hundred-million dollars to prevent forest fires since 2017, adding that nearly half the work done has been in federally owned forests.
President Trump has repeatedly criticized California’s management of its forests as a major cause of recent wildfires.
Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Sarah Schweinsberg.
Manafort discloses more ties with Russia » Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort shared polling data during the 2016 presidential campaign, with an associate accused of having ties with Russian intelligence. He was identified in a court filing this week as businessman Konstantin Kilimnik.
Manafort’s lawyers accidentally disclosed the information by not properly redacting it from their paperwork. The filing revealed that Manafort shared the polling data with Russian officials who might have used the information in their effort to influence the election.
Manafort has pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges related to international business dealings that took place long before he joined the Trump campaign.
American teen captured fighting for ISIS » A Kurdish militia group allied with the U.S. says it has captured a group of people fighting for ISIS in Syria, including an American teenager. WORLD Radio’s Kristen Flavin reports.
KRISTEN FLAVIN, REPORTER: The Kurdish militia known as YPG said Wednesday it captured eight foreign combatants fighting with ISIS. Among them, a 16-year-old boy from the United States.
The YPG captured the fighters in the eastern province of Deir el-Zour where ISIS still holding on to pockets of territory amid fierce fighting.
In a statement, the YPG identified the 16-year-old American teenager as Soulay Noah Su. The State Department has not confirmed the report.
On Sunday, the Kurdish group announced the capture of five fighters, including two U.S. citizens, one of whom has been identified as a former school teacher from Houston.
Reporting for WORLD Radio, I’m Kristen Flavin.