The Senate on Thursday afternoon approved a border security package to avert another government shutdown, as the White House said President Trump is preparing to take the extraordinary step of declaring a national emergency to obtain additional funding for his long-proposed wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.
The bill passed 83-16. The border security compromise now heads to the House for a vote.
Before the Senate vote, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said the president would sign the compromise bill, and would take executive action to unlock other federal dollars for the wall.
“President Trump will sign the government funding bill, and as he has stated before, he will also take other executive action — including a national emergency — to ensure we stop the national security and humanitarian crisis at the border,” Sanders said in a statement. “The president is once again delivering on his promise to build the wall, protect the border, and secure our great country.”
Lawmakers have until 11:59 p.m. Friday to get the agreement through both houses of Congress and signed by Trump before several Cabinet-level departments shut down and hundreds of thousands of federal workers are furloughed in what would be the second partial government shutdown this year.
Sanders told reporters at the White House there will be announcement later about where the money will come from and how they allocate it. She said the White House is working on those details.
Asked if they were afraid of legal challenges, Sarah said, “We are very prepared but there shouldn’t be. The president is doing his job and Congress should do theirs.”