Barr calls for 'barrier system' on border

Barr calls for 'barrier system' on border
© Stefani Reynolds

President TrumpDonald John Trump Trump responds to calls to tear down monuments with creation of 'National Garden' of statues Trump: Children are taught in school to 'hate their own country' Trump accuses those tearing down statues of wanting to 'overthrow the American Revolution' MORE’s nominee for attorney general, William Barr, on Tuesday urged Congress to include border security funds in a bill to reopen the government, but left the door open for solutions other than President Trump's proposed border wall.

Sen. Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharDemocrats: A moment in history, use it wisely The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Rep. Rodney Davis says most important thing White House can do on COVID-19 is give consistent messaging; US new cases surpass 50k for first time The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Stagwell President Mark Penn says Trump is losing on fighting the virus; Fauci says U.S. 'going in the wrong direction' in fight against virus MORE (D-Minn.) asked Barr during his nomination hearing what he would like to say to federal employees currently furloughed or working without pay during the partial government shutdown.

“I would like to see a deal reached where by Congress recognizes it's imperative to have border security,” Barr said, adding that he would like to see “common-sense barriers.”

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When Klobuchar noted that government funding bills from past years have included border security funds, Barr replied that the U.S. needs “money for border security right now.”

He went on to say that could mean walls, steel slats or other barriers, “whatever makes sense in different areas of the border.”

During an earlier exchange with Sen. Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstRepublicans fear backlash over Trump's threatened veto on Confederate names Senate Republicans defend Trump's response on Russian bounties Overnight Defense: Democrats blast Trump handling of Russian bounty intel | Pentagon leaders set for House hearing July 9 | Trump moves forward with plan for Germany drawdown MORE (R-Iowa), Barr had also called for "a barrier system on the border in order to get control of the border."

A standoff between House Democrats and Trump over the president's requested funding for his long-promised wall on the southern U.S. border has resulted in a now 25-day-long partial government shutdown, setting a new record.

The president had invited several moderate Democrats to the White House for lunch on Tuesday to try and strike a deal on their own that would fund both the government and the border wall.

But Democrats rejected the offer, with none attending the lunch. Several House Republicans were present at the White House meeting.

Senate Republicans on Tuesday also blocked a package of bills passed by the House that would reopen the government. 

--This report was updated at 1:25 p.m.