On The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown

On The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown
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Happy Friday and welcome back to On The Money. I'm Sylvan Lane, and here's your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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THE BIG DEAL: President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump claims media 'smeared' students involved in encounter with Native American man Al Sharpton criticizes Trump’s ‘secret’ visit to MLK monument Gillibrand cites spirituality in 2020 fight against Trump’s ‘dark’ values MORE on Friday said he will hold off on declaring a national emergency to circumvent Congress and begin building his long-promised border wall, at least for the time being.

The president's decision to pull back from his threat to declare an emergency means that the White House is bracing for the partial government shutdown to drag on.

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Trump told reporters at the White House that he has the authority to make an emergency declaration to jump-start wall construction, but said, "I'm not going to do it so fast."

"It's the easy way out, but Congress should do this," Trump said, adding he would "rather not" because the declaration could face court challenges that would delay wall construction for months. The Hill's Jordan Fabian takes us there.

 

Rewind:

  • Trump had said for days that he was leaning toward declaring a national emergency to jumpstart construction of the wall, and his administration had begun internal discussions about how to proceed.
  • During a border visit Thursday viewed widely in Washington as a wind-up to an emergency declaration, Trump told Fox News host Sean Hannity that "if we don't make a deal with Congress, most likely I will do that."

But Trump stepped back from that statement Friday, saying he rather cut a deal with Democrats who've fiercely opposed his $5.7-billion border wall funding request.

 

So what changed? A group of Republican lawmakers and White House officials, including Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerChristie says Trump hired 'riffraff' in new book Trump pitches new plan to reopen government amid Dem pushback Trump expected to pitch immigration deal to end funding stalemate MORE, have urged Trump not to declare an emergency. They say the chances of starting constriction right away are slim because of the legal challenges the declaration would draw.

 

No end in sight: Talks between Trump and Democratic congressional leaders have gone nowhere this week. With no progress made toward a funding bill and the emergency declaration off the table for now, the White House is bracing for a longer shutdown.

The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that the Office of Management and Budget is planning for the partial shutdown to stretch through February.

 

Financial pain sets in: Friday is the first day that hundreds of thousands of federal employees will miss their paychecks. That's left a major chunk of the federal workforce at risk of missing mortgage payments, other bills and even basic necessities.

The House on Friday passed a bill to ensure that workers sidelined by this shutdown and any in the future will receive back pay for missed checks.

Seven House Republicans, though, voted no: Reps. Justin AmashJustin AmashDems revive impeachment talk after latest Cohen bombshell McCarthy, allies retaliate against Freedom Caucus leader On The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown MORE (Mich.), Andy Biggs (Ariz.), Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarMcCarthy, allies retaliate against Freedom Caucus leader On The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown The 7 Republicans who voted against back pay for furloughed workers MORE (Ariz.), Glen Grothman (Wis.), Thomas MassieThomas Harold MassieTwitter suspends account that helped incident with Native American man go viral Massie claims media misrepresented Covington Catholic incident McCarthy, allies retaliate against Freedom Caucus leader MORE (Ky.), Chip RoyCharles (Chip) Eugene RoyHouse Freedom Caucus calls for Congress to work on shutdown through break On The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown The 7 Republicans who voted against back pay for furloughed workers MORE (Texas) and Ted YohoTheodore (Ted) Scott YohoThe new Democratic Congress has an opportunity to move legislation to help horses On The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown The 7 Republicans who voted against back pay for furloughed workers MORE (Fla.).

Trump has pledged to sign the bill, which passed the Senate yesterday.

Even so, federal employees won't receive any of that money until the shutdown ends, hitting workers living paycheck-to-paycheck the hardest. Banks and credit unions are scrambling to help those workers with mortgage payment deferrals, low or no-interest loans and overdraft protection.

But at some point, lenders will be forced to make tough decisions about how much they can aid workers if the shutdown lasts as long as the White House is expecting.

Rob Nichols, president of the American Bankers Association, urged the "administration and Congress to end the standoff before it does any more damage to the economy, federal employees and everyday citizens."

"Our member banks across the country report that the shutdown is starting to take a toll on local communities, preventing customers from securing mortgage approvals and small business loans, while threatening even more harm if the impasse continues," Nichols said.

 

LEADING THE DAY

House Dems pass more funding bills: The House approved legislation that would fund and reopen the Interior Department, Environmental Protection Agency and Forest Service in an 240-179 vote on Friday, the latest effort by Democrats to put pressure on Republicans and President Trump to end the partial shutdown.

Ten Republicans joined Democrats in voting for the measure. They were GOP Reps. Rodney DavisRodney Lee DavisOn The Money: Shutdown Day 25 | Dems reject White House invite for talks | Leaders nix recess with no deal | McConnell blocks second House Dem funding bill | IRS workers called back for tax-filing season | Senate bucks Trump on Russia sanctions Leaders nix recess with no shutdown deal in sight GOP lawmaker jokes: I'm hoping for McDonald's leftovers at White House meeting MORE (Ill.), Brian FitzpatrickBrian K. FitzpatrickLatest funding bill to reopen the government fails in House GOP maps out early 2020 strategy to retake House A rare display of real political courage MORE (Pa.), Jaime Herrera BeutlerJaime Lynn Herrera BeutlerLatest funding bill to reopen the government fails in House On The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown Overnight Energy: House votes to reopen Interior, EPA | Dems question EPA over Wheeler confirmation prep | Virginia Dem backs Green New Deal MORE (Wash.), Will HurdWilliam Ballard HurdGOP rep in op-ed: ‘Some people affiliated with our party have made racist comments’ Texas GOP lawmaker calls Trump border crisis a 'myth' Latest funding bill to reopen the government fails in House MORE (Texas), John KatkoJohn Michael KatkoOn The Money: Shutdown Day 25 | Dems reject White House invite for talks | Leaders nix recess with no deal | McConnell blocks second House Dem funding bill | IRS workers called back for tax-filing season | Senate bucks Trump on Russia sanctions Latest funding bill to reopen the government fails in House Democrats turn down White House invitation for shutdown talks MORE (N.Y.), Adam KinzingerAdam Daniel KinzingerOn The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown Overnight Energy: House votes to reopen Interior, EPA | Dems question EPA over Wheeler confirmation prep | Virginia Dem backs Green New Deal House votes to reopen Interior, EPA as shutdown fight wages on MORE (Ill.), Chris SmithChristopher (Chris) Henry SmithLatest funding bill to reopen the government fails in House On The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown Overnight Energy: House votes to reopen Interior, EPA | Dems question EPA over Wheeler confirmation prep | Virginia Dem backs Green New Deal MORE (N.J.), Elise StefanikElise Marie StefanikElise Stefanik seeks to tackle GOP’s women ‘crisis’ ahead of 2020 Latest funding bill to reopen the government fails in House GOP maps out early 2020 strategy to retake House MORE (N.Y.), Fred UptonFrederick (Fred) Stephen UptonOn The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown Overnight Energy: House votes to reopen Interior, EPA | Dems question EPA over Wheeler confirmation prep | Virginia Dem backs Green New Deal House votes to reopen Interior, EPA as shutdown fight wages on MORE (Mich.) and Greg WaldenGregory (Greg) Paul WaldenHillicon Valley: Republicans demand answers from mobile carriers on data practices | Top carriers to stop selling location data | DOJ probing Huawei | T-Mobile execs stayed at Trump hotel as merger awaited approval House Republicans question mobile carriers on data practices On The Money: Trump says he won't declare emergency 'so fast' | Shutdown poised to become longest in history | Congress approves back pay for workers | More federal unions sue over shutdown MORE (Ore.).

It was the fourth measure approved by the Democratic-controlled House this week. Democrats are voting on a series of bills to open up the parts of the government closed since Dec. 22, which has left about 800,000 federal workers furloughed or working without pay.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGraham angers Dems by digging into Clinton, Obama controversies Senate GOP eyes 'nuclear option' for Trump nominees next week Taiwan’s President Tsai should be invited to address Congress MORE (R-Ky.) has said he will not bring any of the bills up to a vote in the Senate until there is a deal between Trump and Democrats on the president's demand for border wall funding. The Hill's Juliegrace Brufke has more here.

 

Unions sue over shutdown: Federal employee unions filed a lawsuit Friday alleging that the government is violating federal labor laws by requiring employees deemed "essential" to continue working through the partial shutdown without pay.

The lawsuit in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims in Washington, D.C., was brought by the National Federation of Federal Employees, the National Association of Government Employees SEIU, the National Weather Service Employees Organization and the law firm Snider & Associates on behalf of federal workers.

The 19-page complaint accuses the federal government of violating the Fair Labor Standards Act by not paying workers overtime and minimum wage. The Hill's Lydia Wheeler has more here.

  

GOP senators pitch immigration-wall deal as shutdown talks stall: A pair of Republican senators introduced legislation on Friday that would pair President Trump's border funding request with a fix for an Obama-era immigration program, as lawmakers hunt for an end to the ongoing partial government shutdown. The Hill's Jordain Carney tells us more here.

 

GOOD TO KNOW

 

ODDS AND ENDS

  • The marijuana industry is boasting its largest lobbying team in Washington ever, as it gears up to push through major legislation in 2019.
  • The Trump administration is considering moving forward with a major conservative change to Medicaid by allowing states to get block grants for the program.