Paul Ryan says immigration debate 'next big priority'

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of N.Y. accompanied by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of Calif. left and others members of the House and Senate Democrats speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Was

Explaining the government shutdown

Senate leaders in the USA have reportedly reached a two-year budget agreement to resolve a months-long impasse over spending levels.

After the House passed a short-term funding bill Tuesday night, the Senate appeared set to pass a separate version and send it back to the House.

Democrats like Pelosi are pushing for the bill to include provisions for "Dreamers" - immigrants brought illegally to the their parents.

The Senate needs to pass the bill over to the House, but Mr. Ryan said if all goes accordingly, the vote will be held later Thursday evening.

Trump's administration was already preparing for a halt in operations.

Making an appearance in the White House briefing room, Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said he felt happy that Congress recognises the "sobering effect" of budgetary uncertainty on America's military and on the men and women who provide for the nation's defence.

Congress is aiming to prevent a government shutdown on Friday by passing a new spending bill by Thursday at midnight.

Schumer said the deal is close, but acknowledged issues remain for congressional negotiators to iron out.

"I am all in for the proposal that was explained to me", Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of SC said as he came out of McConnell's office.

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GOP leaders announced they would seek to pass the stopgap spending bill by marrying it with a full-year, $659 billion Pentagon spending bill that's a top priority of the party's legion of defense hawks.

The plan will need to be passed in the House of Representatives and the Senate, both controlled by Trump's fellow Republicans, before going to the president to sign.

One person they might want to loop in on their plans: President Trump, who's threatening a shutdown if Congress can't get its act together over immigration.

Republican Representative Bill Huizenga of MI said adding defence funding to the spending bill is the only way to get support from 218 Republicans to pass the House without Democratic support.

During the White House event targeted on criminal threats raised by few immigrants, United States president, Donald Trump stated that, "I'd love to see a shutdown if we don't get this stuff taken care of".

"I don't want to slam the door shut", he said.

The bill now moves to the House.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell teed up a pivotal immigration debate for consideration next week early Friday morning, keeping a promise as soon as the Senate voted to end a government shutdown. She has been speaking on the House floor for hours, since about 10 a.m. ET Wednesday, to demand a commitment from House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, on bringing immigration legislation to the House floor.

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