GOP senator: Nobody wins a government shutdown
© Greg Nash

Sen. Richard ShelbyRichard Craig ShelbyCongress reaches deal to fund government through Dec. 7, preventing shutdown Senate approves first 2019 spending package GOP shrugs off Trump shutdown threat MORE (R-Ala.) is warning against shutting down the government even as President TrumpDonald John TrumpLondon terror suspect’s children told authorities he complained about Trump: inquiry The Memo: Tide turns on Kavanaugh Trump to nominate retiring lawmaker as head of trade agency MORE doubles down on a fight over funding the U.S.-Mexico border wall. 

"Oh no, I don't think anybody wins on that. I think that's a no-win for both parties. I think Democrats will tell you that, too," Shelby, who chairs the Senate Appropriations Committee, told reporters on Monday evening. 
 
Trump doubled down on his shutdown threat on Monday, saying if he doesn't get the border security measures he wants, he would "have no problem doing a shutdown."
 
The president said he wants Congress to authorize more funding for his long-desired wall at the U.S. southern border and to pass an overhaul of the nation's immigration system. 
 
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But his rhetoric undercuts GOP leadership on Capitol Hill, who signaled last week that they expected the fight over wall funding to wait until after the November elections. 
 
Congress has until Sept. 30 to pass government funding legislation and avoid its third shutdown of the year. Republicans are particularly eager to avoid a shutdown roughly a month before a midterm election when they're trying to hold onto their congressional majorities. 
 
Shelby added on Monday that while wall funding and border security are "important," senators were going to focus on keeping the government open. 
 
"I hope the president — he's making his point regarding the wall and his interest in protecting the borders. We all understand that but in the meantime we're trying to fund the government to keep any shutdown period from happening. And regular order and we're going to continue along that vein," he said. 
 
He added that while Trump has the "final word," because he has to sign legislation, "funding the government, all of the government, the military, everything else, law enforcement, is very important too." 
 
Neither the House nor the Senate has approved funding for the Department of Homeland Security yet. 
 
The House Appropriations Committee approved $5 billion for the wall in its Homeland Security bill last week before leaving town until September. However, the Senate’s version of the bill includes only $1.6 billion for border barriers. 
 
The looming fight over border security comes as senators have tried to focus on passing smaller government funding packages and avoid having to pass another mammoth omnibus bill in September. Trump threatened to veto the March bill because he said it didn't provide enough funding for the wall.