BUDGET/GOP/GOVERNMENT/SPENDING/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Senate Republicans are searching for a way out of the impending partial government shutdown. But they are waiting for President Donald Trump to weigh in before making a move, and he appears to be in no rush to help them out. Roughly one-fourth of the federal government is scheduled to shutter on Friday without action, and Democrats and Trump continue to spar over his border wall. With the House out of town until Wednesday, all eyes are on the Senate GOP majority and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who hates shutdowns. But as of Monday night, McConnell and Senate Republicans don’t have any plan. What Trump’s intentions are as to a potential shutdown apparently are as opaque to them as they are to anyone else. Senior Republicans suggested the shutdown deadline may have to come closer before either side is willing to make a deal.”

Burgess Everett, John Bresnahan and Sarah Ferris, “Trump keeps GOP in suspense over shutdown,” Politico, December 17, 2018 7:05 pm