WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans and Democrats on Tuesday offered the first glimmers of a potential resolution to the five-week partial government shutdown, scheduling procedural votes Thursday on President Trump’s proposal to spend $5.7 billion on a border wall and a competing bill that would fund the government through Feb. 8.
The plan for the Senate to consider the dueling proposals reflects the first bipartisan action since the shutdown began on legislation that could end the impasse, offering each party a chance to press its proposal. But the move by Senators Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the majority leader, and Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic leader, is far from a guarantee of breaking the gridlock.
With most Republicans united behind Mr. Trump’s insistence that any legislation to reopen the government include money for a border wall and most Democrats opposed to the linkage, neither measure is likely to draw the 60 votes required to advance.
I am a tad more optimistic on the continuing resolution bill. It doesn’t just include reopening the government; it includes disaster relief money for Gulf states—Texas, North Carolina, Florida, Mississippi—where there are eight Republican senators. Remember, though, this is the legislation McConnell swore he wouldn’t bring to the floor because Trump swore he would veto it.