President Trump has signed a bill guaranteeing back pay for federal workers who have been furloughed or forced to work without pay during the partial government shutdown, the White House announced Wednesday.
The House and Senate had previously voted overwhelmingly to give the workers back pay whenever the federal government fully reopened and Trump had indicated he would sign the measure.
The president did not make a formal statement about the legislation and Wednesday’s signing was closed to the media
The partial government shutdown started Dec. 22, and to date there’s no end in sight. Federal employees received pay stubs with nothing but zeros on them last week. Some posted photos of their empty earnings statements on social media as a rallying cry to end the impasse.
The standoff is rooted in Trump’s insistence that Congress allocate $5.7 billion for his long-promised wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Congressional Democrats have refused to allocate any money for such a barrier and have repeatedly passed legislation funding the Department of Homeland Security at current levels — including $1.3 billion for border security measures — through early February.
Democrats have said they’ll discuss border security with the White House once the government fully reopens.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Author: Samuel Chamberlain