McConnell accuses Democrats of jamming Senate over ‘tantrum’

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOvernight Defense: House passes T spending package with defense funds | Senate set to vote on blocking Saudi arms sales | UN nominee defends climate change record Overnight Defense: House passes T spending package with defense funds | Senate set to vote on blocking Saudi arms sales | UN nominee defends climate change record Senate to vote Thursday to block Trump's Saudi arms deal MORE (R-Ky.) ripped Senate Democrats on Tuesday, comparing their plan to prevent the chamber from taking up legislation to a “partisan tantrum.”

“Now they’re threatening to shut the Senate down, too. ... They’re threatening to shut down efforts to protect our allies and strengthen our relationship with Israel, something they all recently claim to support,” McConnell said from the Senate floor.

Democrats, including Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSenate confirms Trump judicial nominee criticized for being hostile to LGBT community Senate confirms Trump judicial nominee criticized for being hostile to LGBT community Democrats detail new strategy to pressure McConnell on election security bills MORE (D-N.Y.), are expected to vote against taking up a foreign policy bill, arguing the Senate should keep its focus on government funding legislation. 

“They’ve put that partisan tantrum ahead of keeping a quarter of the government open and now they’re saying their partisan tantrum is more urgent than pressing legislation that concerns our alliances with Israel and the Syrian civil war,” McConnell said.

The foreign policy bill includes sanctions against the Syrian government while bolstering U.S. support for Jordan and Israel. It’s scheduled to get a procedural vote on Tuesday evening. Democrats will need 41 votes to block the bill.

The Democratic decision to try to block the bill comes as funding for a U.S.-Mexico border wall has stalemated government funding negotiations aimed at resolving the partial shutdown.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpBooker hits Biden's defense of remarks about segregationist senators: 'He's better than this' Booker hits Biden's defense of remarks about segregationist senators: 'He's better than this' Trump says Democrats are handing out subpoenas 'like they're cookies' MORE and Democratic congressional leadership will give dueling speeches on Tuesday night over the funding fight, which is currently in its 18th day.

Senate Republicans are refusing to move any legislation not backed by the president, who is demanding $5 billion for the border. Trump is expected to make a trip to the border on Thursday. 

House Democrats passed a package last week that would fully reopen the government, including funding the Department of Homeland Security, through Feb. 8.

They’re expected to begin passing individual bills this week.