This week: Congress heading in opposite directions on shutdown plans
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The House and Senate are heading in opposite directions as the partial government shutdown crosses the one-month mark.

Lawmakers will take up competing plans this week to reopen the government, neither of which has enough support to pass both chambers, garner President TrumpDonald John TrumpTed Cruz knocks New York Times for 'stunning' correction on Kavanaugh report US service member killed in Afghanistan Pro-Trump website edited British reality star's picture to show him wearing Trump hat MORE’s signature and end the stalemated funding fight.

The dueling votes come after Trump made a new offer over the weekend asking for $5.7 billion for the wall in exchange for a three-year extension of protected status for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders.

“No, Amnesty is not a part of my offer. It is a 3 year extension of DACA. Amnesty will be used only on a much bigger deal, whether on immigration or something else,” Trump said in a string of tweets defending his plan.

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellThe Hill's 12:30 Report: NY Times story sparks new firestorm over Kavanaugh Senator asked FBI to follow up on new information about Kavanaugh last year Congress must reinstate assault weapons ban MORE (R-Ky.) immediately announced that he would bring up the president’s plan, tucked into legislation to fully reopen the government, this week, despite saying as recently as last week that only a bill backed by both Trump and congressional Democrats would be given a vote.

“I intend to move to this legislation this week. With bipartisan cooperation, the Senate can send a bill to the House quickly so that they can take action as well,” McConnell said in a statement.  

But Trump’s proposal can’t get 60 votes in the Senate, which would require winning over at least seven Democrats as well as getting unanimous support from the chamber’s 53 Republicans. Democrats — including more centrist members whom Republicans would need to flip — have argued that the president and McConnell have to fully reopen the government before negotiating on border security.

Trump “single-handedly took away DACA and TPS protections in the first place — offering some protections back in exchange for the wall is not a compromise but more hostage taking,” said Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSchumer, Pelosi push Trump to back universal background check bill Sinema says she would back Kennedy in race against Markey Democrats threaten to withhold defense votes over wall MORE (D-N.Y).

Democrats were not consulted as the White House was drafting its plan, according to two aides, who both noted that party members had previously rejected similar offers.

A previous, broader Trump-proposed bill that would have traded a path to citizenship for roughly 1.8 million immigrants in exchange for $25 billion for border security, tougher interior enforcement and new limits on legal immigration garnered only 39 votes in the Senate, including three Democratic senators.

Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) Manchin The 13 Republicans needed to pass gun-control legislation Trump, lawmakers consider app that would conduct background checks: report Conservatives offer stark warning to Trump, GOP on background checks MORE (D-W.Va.), the only one of those Democratic senators who is still in office, threaded a needle with his reaction to Trump’s latest proposal and didn’t specifically say how he would vote.

“I'm hopeful the President's statement tonight will allow us to immediately reopen gov, put WVians back to work & start negotiating long-term immigration reform. I look forward to working w/my GOP & Dem colleagues to make this happen so that we can end this shameful shutdown,” Manchin tweeted.

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Some GOP senators suggested they saw Trump’s proposal as an attempt to restart negotiations with congressional leadership, which have been at a standstill for nearly two weeks, rather than a take-it-or-leave it offer.

“Put out a straw man proposal. Get something out there the president can say, ‘I can support this’ — and has elements from both sides. Put it on the table, then open it up for debate,” Sen. James LankfordJames Paul LankfordGOP group's ad calls on Graham to push for election security: 'Are you still trying?' Manufacturing group leads coalition to urge Congress to reauthorize Ex-Im Bank GOP group calls on Republican senators to stand up to McConnell on election security in new ads MORE (R-Okla.) told ABC’s “This Week.”

He added that the Senate’s vote this week was not about passing a bill but about trying to start a debate and “open [it] up and say: ‘Can we debate this? Can we amend it? Can we make changes?’ ”

In a call with House GOP lawmakers Saturday, Trump indicated the proposal could be a jumping off point for Democrats to offer a broader plan, a source on the call told The Hill.

With the Senate out of town until Tuesday afternoon, a procedural vote on Trump’s plan isn’t expected until later in the week, likely Thursday. Senators, who are currently scattered around the country, are expected to get 24-hours advance notice of a vote so they can return to Washington.

Roughly a quarter of the federal government has been closed since Dec. 22 because of the fight over funding for Trump’s U.S.-Mexico border wall. The entrenched battle has forced roughly 800,000 employees — who will miss their second paycheck on Friday — to be furloughed or work without pay.

While Senate Republicans will try to move forward with Trump’s proposal, House Democrats are planning on Wednesday to take up another spending bill that doesn’t include wall funding.

The bill — introduced by House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita LoweyNita Sue LoweyCongress set to ignore Trump's wall request in stopgap measure Overnight Defense: Trump says Taliban talks 'dead' after canceled Camp David meeting | North Korea offers to restart nuke talks this month | Trump denies role in Air Force crew staying at his resort McConnell: Short-term spending bill needed to avoid shutdown MORE (D-N.Y.) — would provide funding for six appropriations bills through the end of the fiscal year.

The legislation is the latest move in Democrats' strategy to place pressure on GOP lawmakers to break with Trump’s demand for a wall along the southern border. But despite Democrats' attempts, top House Republicans assert the conference largely remains unified in the call for border security funding and a barrier along the U.S.-Mexico border.

The House will also revote on a short-term spending bill that was brought to the floor last week. Chaos broke out on the floor last Thursday after Republicans slammed Democrats for passing a stopgap spending measure to reopen the government through a voice vote, arguing their request for a roll call vote was ignored. House Majority Leader Steny HoyerSteny Hamilton HoyerThis week: House jump-starts effort to prevent shutdown Words matter, except to Democrats, when it involves impeaching Trump Nadler: Impeachment inquiry a 'made-up term' but it's essentially 'what we are doing' MORE (D-Md.) later vacated the vote. It is expected to come to the floor again Wednesday.

Senate Democrats are expected to keep trying to call up the House funding proposals for a vote but their efforts are expected to be blocked by McConnell.

NATO support 

A bipartisan bill reiterating congressional support of NATO is slated to come to the House floor on Tuesday.

The legislation— introduced by Rep. Jimmy PanettaJames Varni PanettaOvernight Energy: Warren edges past Sanders in poll of climate-focused voters | Carbon tax shows new signs of life | Greens fuming at Trump plans for development at Bears Ears monument Carbon tax shows new signs of life in Congress Lawmakers introduce bill to block U.S. companies from doing business with Huawei MORE (D-Calif.) — rebuffs any efforts the president may make to withdraw from the alliance in addition to supporting 2 percent of NATO countries' gross domestic product on defense and advocating for funding for the “European Deterrence Initiative to counter Russian aggression.”

"The NATO alliance is a pillar of international peace, stability, and security, and serves as a deterrent against aggression and destabilization," Panetta said in a statement.  "We must promote our shared values of freedom, equality, and empowerment by continuing to invest in the institutions, programs, and people that enhance our national security."

Rules change

Senate Republicans are discussing trying to muscle through a rules change that would significantly reduce the amount of time it takes to confirm most of Trump’s nominees as soon as next week.

Sen. Todd YoungTodd Christopher YoungSenators pressure Trump to help end humanitarian crisis in Kashmir Congress set for chaotic fall sprint Overnight Defense: Senate fails to override Trump veto on Saudi arms sales | Two US troops killed in Afghanistan | Senators tee up nominations, budget deal ahead of recess MORE (R-Ind.), asked about using the “nuclear option” to change the rules, told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt on Monday that he thought the chamber could take up the issue after a procedural vote on Trump’s immigration plan, which Democrats are expected to block.

"I support the move, because Democrats have been in an ahistorical fashion violating precedence about the number of hours in which one debates noncontroversial nominees that have been reported out of different committees of jurisdiction," Young said, when asked about using the "nuclear option."

Currently, nominations face up to an additional 30 hours of debate time even after they’ve cleared an initial vote that shows they have the simple majority support needed to pass.

But the proposal being discussed by Republicans would cut the debate time down from 30 hours to eight hours. It would further cap post-cloture debate time for district court nominations at two hours.

Most Cabinet-level nominees, as well as Supreme Court nominees and circuit court nominees, would still be subjected to the full 30 hours of debate.

The proposal is similar to a resolution that passed with bipartisan support in 2013, but only governed the 113th Congress. Democrats were in control of the chamber at the time.

But Republicans are unlikely to get bipartisan support for the effort and are openly mulling using the “nuclear option,” which allows the Senate rules to be changed with only a simple majority. They have an expanded majority, with 53 seats, giving them more leeway to muscle through the changes over Democratic objections.