Lawmakers tasked with reaching border deal to meet Wednesday
© Stefani Reynolds

A bipartisan, bicameral committee tasked with hashing out an agreement on Department of Homeland Security (DHS) funding will meet for the first time this week. 

Lawmakers will meet at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, according to a notice from the House Appropriations Committee. 
 
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It will mark the first time the panel has met since Congress passed a three-week bill to reopen the government and kicked the fight over funding for the U.S.-Mexico border wall to the conference committee. The continuing resolution (CR) passed by Congress would fund approximately a quarter of the government through Feb. 15, setting up another deadline to avoid a second partial government shutdown.
 
 
Democrats had previously offered money for fencing, but will be under pressure to take a hard line after the president agreed to reopen the government with no border wall funding.
 
Trump, meanwhile, has floated declaring a national emergency to construct the wall if lawmakers can't get a deal. 
 
Sen. Shelley Moore CapitoShelley Wellons Moore CapitoGaetz: Some lawmakers reviewed transcript at White House On The Money: Trump takes aim at China in UN address | Consumer confidence fell as trade tensions rose | Senate proposes billion for Trump border wall Senate proposes billion for Trump border wall MORE (R-W.Va.) said Monday that there were already behind-the-scenes talks happening "quite actively" about how to get to a deal and predicted that a final agreement would include money for "physical barriers."
 
"I think it's important that we have that. The size of it is probably where the biggest bickering would be, but I think there's enough Democrats that support this," Capito, a member of the conference committee, told WV MetroNews. "I don't think this is going to be easy, but I don't think it's impossible." 

The Senate Appropriations Committee cleared a bill last year that would provide $1.6 billion for the border, including approximately 65 miles of pedestrian fencing. Capito added on Monday that the Senate bill should be a starting point for the conference committee. 

"My bill that was passed in June is a good starting-off point. It has a lot of really good, bipartisan, already agreed-to items," she said. 

The Senate also voted down two proposals last week, including a measure backed by Trump that would have traded $5.7 billion for the border wall in exchange for letting Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients and some temporary protected status holders apply for a three-year extension of protected status.