WASHINGTON - President Donald Trump and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., both vowed anew Tuesday not to yield in a standoff over border-wall funding that has led to a partial government shutdown now a month old.
In a morning tweet, Trump accused Democrats of playing "political games," exclaimed "No cave!" and argued that construction of a wall along the Mexican border would lead to substantially lower crime rates and fewer drugs coming into the United States.
"Without a Wall our Country can never have Border or National Security," Trump wrote.
In response, Pelosi accused Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., of "holding Americans hostage" by not acting on bills the House is passing that would reopen shuttered government departments - but do not meet Trump's demands for border-wall funding.
The dueling messages come as the House and Senate are taking divergent paths on legislation aimed at reopening government as hundreds of thousands of federal workers face a second missed paycheck at the end of the week.
The Republican-led Senate plans to take up a proposal announced by Trump on Saturday to trade temporary protections for young undocumented immigrants and others for the $5.7 billion that the president is seeking for his border wall.
The legislation also includes some strict new restrictions on the ability of Central American minors to seek asylum in the United States, which has sparked an outcry from immigrant activists and is likely to harden Democratic opposition to the plan.
The Senate legislation would reopen the government through Sept. 30 while funding a variety of other immigration security measures and spending $12.7 billion on hurricane and wildfire disaster relief. But Democrats have rejected the plan, so it appears unlikely to garner the 60 votes necessary to advance.
The Supreme Court also added a wrinkle to the debate over the Senate bill on Tuesday by taking no action on the Trump administration's request that it review the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which has protected nearly 700,000 people commonly known as "dreamers."
The announcement leaves the Obama-era initiative in place for now, following a string of lower court rulings that Trump's decision to terminate the program was based on faulty legal reasoning and that the administration has failed to provide a solid rationale for ending it.
Even before Tuesday's court announcement, Democrats had argued that Trump's legislation was an insufficient solution to a problem of his own making.
The Democratic-led House, meanwhile, plans to pass spending bills that would reopen portions of the government that have nothing to do with the wall.
The legislation will include some security priorities supported by both parties, including a total of about $1 billion for immigration judges and ports of entry along the border. But the House legislation is dead on arrival in the Senate, where McConnell has made clear he will not advance any spending bills Trump won't sign.
In a tweet Tuesday morning, Trump claimed a united front with McConnell and other Republicans.
"Never seen @senatemajldr and Republicans so united on an issue as they are on the Humanitarian Crisis & Security on our Southern Border," he wrote.
This article was written by John Wagner, a reporter for The Washington Post. The Washington Post's Jeff Stein and Robert Barnes contributed to this report.