Mulvaney: Government shutdown on the table

Acting White House chief of staff Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyTrump frustrated with aides who talked to Mueller The Hill's Morning Report — Mueller aftermath: What will House Dems do now? The Hill's Morning Report - Waiting on Mueller: Answers come on Thursday MORE on Sunday warned that another partial government shutdown is possible if congressional negotiators fail to reach a border security deal that President TrumpDonald John TrumpRussia's election interference is a problem for the GOP Pence to pitch trade deal during trip to Michigan: report Iran oil minister: US made 'bad mistake' in ending sanctions waivers MORE finds acceptable by week’s end.

Mulvaney warned on “Fox News Sunday” that “a government shutdown is technically still on the table.”

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He reiterated the warning on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” telling host Chuck Todd that “you absolutely cannot” rule out another shutdown because the president will not sign on to law a deal he finds unacceptable.

“Let's say for sake of this discussion that the Democrats prevail and the hardcore left-wing Democrats prevail,” Mulvaney said, noting that one Democratic lawmaker proposed on Twitter over the weekend that Congress shouldn’t appropriate any money for the Department of Justice.

“Let's say that the hardcore left wing of the Democrat party prevails this negotiation and they put a bill on the president’s desk with, say, zero money for the wall or $800 million, some absurdly low number. How does he sign that? He cannot in good faith sign that,” he added.

Funding for about 25 percent of the federal department will expire after Feb. 15.

Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill are at loggerheads over Trump’s request to provide $5.7 billion in funding for a border wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Mulvaney said on NBC that he didn’t know whether a deal is possible and noted that there is now a lull in the talks.

“I honestly don't know because it depends on who you listen to, and in fact, I think what we're seeing now in these negotiations, and again, the White House, at the request of all the parties on the Hill, have sort of stepped back,” Mulvaney said when asked how close negotiators are to a deal.

He also blamed divisions among Democrats for the lack of progress, arguing that it has made it difficult to pin down their negotiating position.

“It’s all over the map, and I think it’s all over the map because of the Democrats are all over the map,” he said, pointing to ideological differences between liberals represented by Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersAndrew Cuomo: Biden has best chance at 'main goal' of beating Trump Poll: Buttigieg tops Harris, O'Rourke as momentum builds Buttigieg responds to accusation of pushing a 'hate hoax' about Pence MORE (I-Vt.) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezVA 'ain't broke' — but it can certainly be improved The Memo: GOP banks on Biden falling in primary Dems seek to rein in calls for impeachment MORE (D-N.Y.) and more moderate Democrats, such as Sens. Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) Tester20 Dems demand no more money for ICE agents, Trump wall Overnight Energy: Bipartisan Senate group seeks more funding for carbon capture technology | Dems want documents on Interior pick's lobbying work | Officials push to produce more electric vehicle batteries in US Bipartisan senators want 'highest possible' funding for carbon capture technology MORE (D-Mont.), a negotiator, and Christopher CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsMenendez, Rubio lead Senate effort to regulate Venezuelan sanctions Dem report questions State Dept. decision to revoke award to Trump critic Senate Dem calls on Trump to apologize for attacks on McCain MORE (D-Del.), a moderate.