January 22, 2018 / 6:36 PM / a month ago

Pence blames Democrats for U.S. shut down, welcomes reopening

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on Monday welcomed news that U.S. senators voted to move forward on funding legislation that would reopen the federal government, blaming Democrats for the shutdown but saying they had failed.

In Washington, the Senate ended a three-day standoff between Democrats and President Donald Trump’s Republicans over immigration and border security by voting on a deal that would fund the government until Feb. 8.

“We welcome the news that thanks to the firm stand taken by President Trump and House and Senate Republicans, the government shutdown in Washington, D.C., is coming to an end,” Pence said in a statement to reporters before a dinner with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

He said looked forward to returning from Jerusalem, where he has been on an official visit, to Washington to get back to work after the shutdown has ended.

“The Schumer shutdown failed,” he said, referring to Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer.

Democrats had held back support for funding originally because they wanted guarantees on an immigration debate, specifically about the fate of children brought to the United States by undocumented immigrants.

“Now that the government is reopening, Congress can get back to work advancing the president’s agenda,” Pence said.

He credited Trump with creating more than two million job and driving the stocks market to record levels.

Reporting by Maayan Lubell and Jeff Mason Editing by Jeremy Gaunt

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