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National News

    The family of a Kansas man fatally shot by police at the door of his home after a hoax emergency call has sued the city of Wichita and the unidentified officers involved.The federal lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court of Kansas seeks unspecified damages related to the Dec. 28 death of Andrew Finch in Wichita. The unarmed 28-year-old man was shot by police responding to a California man's call with a fake story about a shooting and kidnapping at Finch's Wichita home.The shooting drew national attention to a practice called 'swatting,' in which a person makes up a false report to get emergency responders to descend on an address. The hoax call reportedly was made after a dispute over a small wager online in a 'Call of Duty' online video game tournament, according to Dexerto, a news service focused on gaming.'The family wants justice and reform — they want to make sure Andy's legacy means something and maybe some other family won't have to experience the tragedy they are experiencing because of a change in policy and procedures,' said civil rights attorney Andrew M. Stroth, who is representing the family. His Chicago law firm specializes in police shootings cases nationwide.Wichita police officers have been involved in at least 29 shootings between 2010 and 2015, resulting in at least 15 deaths, according the lawsuit. In most of these cases, the city has declined to release the names of the involved officers.'Two children — a 7-year-old boy and an almost 2-year-old girl — lost their father because of the unjustified and unconstitutional acts of the Wichita Police Department as well as the policies, practices and custom of the WPD,' Stroth said.Tyler Barriss, 25, of Los Angeles has been criminally charged with involuntary manslaughter, giving false alarm and interference with a law enforcement officer for allegedly placing the hoax call. Barriss is not named as a defendant in the Finch family's civil lawsuit.'Wichita leadership is trying to put all the blame on the young man in California who placed the swatting call,' Stroth said. 'But let's be clear: the swatter did not shoot the bullet that killed Andy Finch. That was an officer working under the direction of the Wichita Police Department.'The lawsuit cites FBI crime statistics showing Wichita has a ratio of one shooting death for every 120 officers — a number that is 11 times greater than the national ratio and 12 times greater than the ratio in Chicago.'How can Wichita police department officers not be trained to deal with this type of situation,' Stroth said. 'Swatting is not new, prank calls are not new.'The hoax call was not a local 911 call, and the house the caller described did not match the description of the house police surrounded in Wichita. Those factors should have been assessed prior to a police officer from 40 to 50 yards away shooting a bullet at Finch, Stroth said.Police have said officers told Finch to put his hands up and move slowly and that Finch moved a hand toward the area of his waistband. Police have also said an officer who feared Finch was reaching for a gun fired a single shot. Finch was unarmed.Sedgwick County District Attorney Marc Bennett said earlier this month that he is still reviewing whether any charges will be filed against the police officer, and once he makes a determination that decision would be made public.
  • Bill Cosby has performed in public for the first time since a sex abuse scandal embroiled him in 2015, telling stories and honoring old friends in his hometown on Monday as a retrial looms in his criminal sexual assault case.The 80-year-old entertainer took the stage Monday night at a Philadelphia jazz club for his first show since May 2015. His last comedy tour ended amid protests as about 60 women were coming forward to accuse him of drugging and molesting them over five decades, something he has denied.Cosby arrived at the club on the arm of his spokesman Andrew Wyatt. He wore a gray hoodie printed with the phrase 'Hello Friend,' something his late son, Ennis Cosby, often would say.Cosby is scheduled for an April 2 retrial on charges he drugged and molested a woman at his suburban Philadelphia home in 2004. He has pleaded not guilty and remains free on bail. His first trial ended with a hung jury last year. Jury selection for his retrial will start March 29.Cosby's spokesman notified reporters of the comedy performance about two hours before he was to take the stage at the LaRose Jazz Club. The show was part of a program honoring jazz musician Tony Williams.The performance is Cosby's latest step back into the spotlight he's mostly shied from since his December 2015 arrest.Two weeks ago, Cosby invited reporters to tag along as he ate dinner with old friends at a Philadelphia restaurant.Over the weekend, Cosby's social media accounts featured photos of him visiting a barber and a cafe in the area and showing support for the Philadelphia Eagles, who won Sunday's NFC Championship game against the Minnesota Vikings and secured a spot in the Super Bowl.___This story has been corrected to show the arrest was in 2015, not 2005.
  • A 35-year-old Melbourne Beach mother has been arrested in the drowning death of her 10-month-old baby, Brevard County authorities said. >> Read more trending news  Rosa Regina Feeney was arrested Monday and faces charges of aggravated manslaughter of a child and child neglect. Deputies said the investigation began Dec. 6 at Deangelo’s By The Sea, a hotel in Melbourne Beach, after reports of an unresponsive child. Deputies believe Feeney had been drinking, went to take a bath while the child was playing on the bathroom floor, then put him in the tub with her, before falling asleep. When Feeney woke up, she found the child under water and unresponsive, and ran for help, according to Brevard County sheriff officials. Feeney appeared to be inebriated during her contact that night with law enforcement and medical professionals, deputies said. >> Related: NASA remembers space pioneer and astronaut John Young She’s being held in the Brevard County Jail on a $60,000 bail.
  • Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens made his first public appearance Monday in nearly two weeks since acknowledging an extramarital affair, announcing a budget plan that would cut roughly $68 million from colleges and universities.In announcing his recommended $28.8 billion budget for the fiscal year that begins in July, the Republican governor said increased spending on health care 'means we have to tighten up in other areas of government and spend less money.' He cited growth in 'administrative costs' at many universities in calling for a higher education funding cut compared to the current fiscal year.Greitens faced pushback from some lawmakers over the education cuts.'We cannot continue to balance the budget on the backs of students; they are the future workers and job creators Missouri desperately needs to cultivate,' Columbia Republican Sen. Caleb Rowden said in a statement. 'Continuing to neglect our public colleges, universities and trade schools seriously hinders Missouri's ability to compete. I look forward to working with my colleagues to pass a budget that better reflects Missourians' priorities.'He also is recommending a $40 million cut to the Department of Social Services 'through Medicaid cost containment initiatives.'Greitens attempted to focus on the budget during the news conference at his Capitol office, but reporters repeatedly asked him about the scandal. At least five Republicans and several Democrats in the Legislature have called for his resignation.Although Greitens has acknowledged the affair with his former hairdresser, he did not directly answer repeated questions from reporters over whether there is any truth to allegations that he took a partially nude photo of her. He said there was 'no photograph for blackmail,' one of the claims made in a secretly recorded conversation between the woman and her then-husband.
  • The Latest on President Donald Trump's tariffs on imported solar panels and washing machines (all times local):6:19 p.m.The Solar Energy Industries Association, which represents solar installers, says the tariff on solar panels will lead to the delay or cancellation of billions of dollars of investment in solar energy and the loss of 23,000 industry jobs this year.One of the group's members, Bill Vietas, president of RBI Solar in Cincinnati, says the industry has been growing over the past five years. 'Government tariffs will increase the cost of solar and depress demand, which will reduce the orders we're getting and cost manufacturing workers their jobs,' he says.Whirlpool issued a statement from Chairman Jeff Fettig saying that the decision on washing machines would create new manufacturing jobs in Ohio, Kentucky, South Carolina and Tennessee.___5:55 p.m.President Donald Trump is approving tariffs on imported solar-energy components and large washing machines in a bid to help U.S. manufacturers.The administration cast Monday's decisions as part of Trump's pledge to put American companies and jobs first.The administration is imposing an immediate tariff of 30 percent on most imported solar modules, with the rate declining before phasing out after four years.For large residential washing machines, tariffs will start at up to 50 percent and phase out after three years.The U.S. solar industry is split over the issue. Two small subsidiaries of foreign companies that made solar cells in the U.S. favor tariffs, but a larger number of companies that install solar-power systems say their costs will rise and jobs will be lost.
  • The Justice Department will 'leave no stone unturned' to locate five months' worth of missing text messages from an FBI agent who was removed last summer from special counsel Robert Mueller's investigative team, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Monday.The department last month began providing lawmakers with copies of text communications to and from the veteran counterintelligence agent, Peter Strzok, who was reassigned from Mueller's Russia investigation following the discovery of anti-Trump messages he had traded by phone with an FBI lawyer.The department on Friday gave additional text messages to congressional committees, which had requested copies of communications over a two-year period ending last July. But a letter accompanying that delivery revealed that the FBI's technical system for retaining text messages on bureau phones had failed to preserve communications between Dec. 14, 2016, and May 17, 2017. The latter date is when Mueller was appointed as special counsel to investigate potential coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign.The explanation for the gap was 'misconfiguration issues related to rollouts, provisioning, and software upgrades that conflicted with the FBI's collection capabilities.'The result was that data that should have been automatically collected and retained for long-term storage and retrieval was not collected,' according to the letter Justice Department official Stephen Boyd sent to congressional committees.In a statement Monday, Sessions said the Justice Department will 'leave no stone unturned to confirm with certainty why these text messages are not now available to be produced and will use every technology available to determine whether the missing messages are recoverable from another source.'Though Boyd's letter does not raise the potential of any wrongdoing or anything suspicious, Sessions also said, 'If any wrongdoing were to be found to have caused this gap, appropriate legal disciplinary action measures will be taken.'The text messages, some of which convey derogatory opinions about Trump, are part of a Justice Department inspector general inquiry into the FBI's handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation. Strzok was a critical agent on that case before becoming part of Mueller's team.The FBI lawyer with whom he was texting, Lisa Page, was also assigned to the Mueller investigation but left the team before Mueller became aware of the messages, according to the special counsel's office.___Follow Eric Tucker on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/etuckerAP
  • Ending a three day stalemate that resulted in a federal government shutdown, Democrats on Monday dropped their filibuster of a temporary spending bill in the Senate, allowing the Congress to swiftly approve a resumption of government funding, which will put hundreds of thousands of federal workers back on the job immediately. “I am pleased that Democrats in Congress have come to their senses,” President Donald Trump said in a written statement issued by the White House, as Republicans said Democrats had folded under pressure. The Senate voted 81-18 to re-open the government. The House followed soon after, voting 266-150 in favor of the plan. The deal reached on Monday between the two parties not only allows government funding to resume, but will re-start negotiations on major budget issues, as well as the question of what should be done with illegal immigrant “Dreamers” in the United States. BREAKING: Trump says Democrats 'have come to their senses' on shutdown; he's open to immigration deal only if 'good for our country' — AP Politics (@AP_Politics) January 22, 2018 “We will make a long-term deal on immigration if, and only if, it is good for our country,” the President said, as he met separately with Senators of each party on the matter. When asked if they had been on the short end of the shutdown fight, Democrats emphasized the deal on immigration legislation, which will allow a Senate debate if there is no negotiated deal by February 8. “What other choice did we have?” said Sen. Bill Nelson (R-FL) to reporters. “Otherwise, to go in gridlock and shutdown for weeks? I mean, that’s not acceptable.” Lawmakers also approved language that will insure federal workers and members of the military will be paid, despite the funding lapse of the last three days. We have been talking for months about ways to address Congress’ unfinished business — military spending, disaster relief, healthcare, immigration, and border security. Now those talks can get going again. — Leader McConnell (@SenateMajLdr) January 22, 2018 While this agreement ended the shutdown, it didn’t solve the underlying problems which contributed to the high stakes political showdown. Both parties must still work out a deal on how much to spend on the federal government operations this year – President Trump wants a big increase in military spending, while Democrats want extra money for domestic programs. And then, there is immigration, which has bedeviled the Congress for years, and could again, as lawmakers try to work out a deal with something for both sides. “There’s a symmetric deal to be done here on these DACA young people,” said Sen. David Perdue (R-GA), who joined a small group of other GOP Senators in meeting with the President this afternoon on immigration. Perdue says the deal is simple – Democrats get protections for illegal immigrant “Dreamers,” while Republicans would get provisions “to provide border security, end chain migration issues, and end the diversity visa lottery.” The White House emphasized that as well. White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley: “Anything that relates to DACA … can be in the conversation, but it has to be tethered to the other three main points, including a wall” https://t.co/xjXCFx9PwD — CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) January 22, 2018 But to get something into law, lawmakers will need some help from the President. “What has been difficult is dealing with the White House, and not knowing where the President is,” said Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), as Republicans have complained publicly about conflicting signals on immigration from Mr. Trump. “Congress should act responsibly to allow these young people to stay,” Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) said of the “Dreamers.”
  • President Donald Trump approved tariffs on imported solar-energy components and large washing machines in a bid to help U.S. manufacturers.The president on Monday approved recommendations by the U.S. International Trade Commission to impose the tariffs. The administration cast the moves as part of Trump's pledge to put American companies and jobs first.Most imported solar modules will face an immediate tariff of 30 percent, with the rate declining before phasing out after four years.For large residential washing machines, tariffs will start at up to 50 percent and phase out after three years.The U.S. solar industry was split over the trade barriers.The tariffs were sought by Suniva, which filed for bankruptcy protection last year, and the U.S. subsidiary of Germany's SolarWorld. They said that a nearly 500 percent increase in imported solar panels over five years led to a ruinous price collapse, which they blamed on Chinese solar companies.'The president's action makes clear again that the Trump administration will always defend American workers, farmers, ranchers, and businesses in this regard,' U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in a statement announcing the decision.The Solar Energy Industries Association, which represents solar installers, said the tariff would lead to the delay or cancellation of billions of dollars of investment in solar energy and the loss of 23,000 industry jobs this year.One of the group's members, Bill Vietas, president of RBI Solar in Cincinnati, said the industry has been growing over the past five years. 'Government tariffs will increase the cost of solar and depress demand, which will reduce the orders we're getting and cost manufacturing workers their jobs,' he said.Whirlpool issued a statement from Chairman Jeff Fettig saying that the decision on washing machines would create new manufacturing jobs in Ohio, Kentucky, South Carolina and Tennessee.'This is a victory for American workers and consumers alike,' Fettig said. 'By enforcing our existing trade laws, President Trump has ensured American workers will compete on a level playing field with their foreign counterparts.'Suniva and SolarWorld were helped by a 1974 trade law that lets companies seek trade protection if they can show damage from a rise in imports.Congress has no authority to change or veto Trump's decision. Countries affected by the decision can appeal to the World Trade Organization.___David Koenig in Dallas and Susan Montoya Bryan in Albuquerque, New Mexico, contributed to this report.
  • Three members of a Texas family were sentenced to prison last week in the brutal 2013 beating and stomping of a 13-year-old relative who authorities said was raped -- and impregnated -- by her own brother.  Sharon Jones, 47, of Dallas, and two of her children, Cedric Jones Jr., 29, and Cecila McDonald, 28, pleaded guilty for their part in the 2013 crime, which caused the girl to miscarry, The Dallas Morning News reported. The newspaper reported in 2016 that the victim and five siblings, including a younger sister forced to help hold her down during the beating, moved from California to Texas to live with Sharon Jones, their aunt, after their grandmother died.  “Most people would treat strangers better,” prosecutor Rachel Burris said during last week’s sentencing hearing, according to the newspaper. “Yet these people did it to someone they promised to love. “They held her down. They forced her to lay there while people stomped her. It was savage.” >> Read more trending news A judge sentenced Sharon Jones to 12 years in prison. Cedric Jones was sentenced to five years in prison and his sister was sentenced to serve seven years, according to the Morning News. The siblings and their mother each pleaded guilty to felony family violence aggravated assault.  A fourth suspect, Lonnell McDonald, was convicted in 2016 of aggravated assault and sentenced to 10 years in prison, the newspaper reported.  The beating, which the now-19-year-old victim reported in 2015, stemmed from a sexual assault case in which the girl’s 24-year-old brother was accused of raping her in 2012, when she was 13. The brother, who relocated to Dallas a year before his siblings, was ordered to not have contact with them, though it was not immediately clear why. The brother’s name is being withheld to help shield the victim’s identity.  Testimony in Lonnell McDonald’s trial showed that, despite Sharon Jones promising to take in the siblings to keep them out of foster homes, the children were instead sent to live with Lonnell and Cecila McDonald. Their older brother was living at the McDonald home at the time, the Morning News reported.  It was there that the alleged sexual assault took place, according to testimony.  Sharon Jones is accused of telling the girl and her siblings to lie to Texas Child Protective Services caseworkers so authorities would not find out they were living in the same home as their brother. The 13-year-old victim told authorities that she told Jones and Cecila McDonald about the sexual assault after it came out that their older brother had sexually abused McDonald’s own three young children. The women, who were reportedly worried that McDonald would lose custody of her children, never told authorities about the girl’s allegations.  The brother has since been found mentally incompetent to stand trial and his criminal charges remain in limbo, the Morning News said. When the teen’s relatives learned that she was eight months pregnant, they tried forcing Plan B birth control pills and cinnamon tablets on her to induce a miscarriage, the Morning News reported. When that didn’t work, they held her down and took turns stomping on her abdomen. Cecila McDonald screamed during the attack, “(Expletive), you ain’t about to get my kids taken away from me,” the newspaper said.  After beating her for hours, they left the girl in a bathtub, bleeding and drifting in and out of consciousness, as she gave birth to a stillborn baby, the Morning News reported. To combat her loss of blood, they fed her iron pills. The victim told authorities they took her baby away before she got to see the child.  The girl’s younger sister tried to care for her afterward. The Morning News reported in 2016 that the younger girl, who was 12 during the attack, was granted immunity in the case in return for her testimony.  After the baby was born, Cecila McDonald put the infant’s body in a bucket. She, her brother and her mother then tried to burn the remains on a grill. Sharon Jones subsequently paid her son $25 to get rid of the portion that did not burn. The Morning News said he hid the remains, which have never been found.  “To this day, we don’t know what happened to that baby,” Burris told jurors during Lonnell McDonald’s trial. 
  • Alabama asked the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday to let the state proceed with executing a 67-year-old inmate who lawyers say has suffered strokes and dementia and cannot remember killing a police officer decades ago.The Alabama attorney general's office asked justices to reject inmate Vernon Madison's request for a stay of his lethal injection set for Thursday. Madison's attorneys have asked justices to review a state court finding that he was competent to be executed.'Vernon Madison is not insane, nor does he contend that he is insane. Yet, he seeks a stay of execution to permit the Court to review the denial of a petition ... that applies solely to a prisoner's sanity,' attorneys for the state wrote. The state argued the court previously ruled the execution could proceed and Madison has presented nothing new to justify a stay.Madison was sentenced to death for his conviction in the 1985 killing of Mobile Police Officer Julius Schulte. Schulte had responded to a domestic disturbance call involving Madison. Prosecutors have said that Madison crept up and shot Schulte in the back of the head as he sat in his police car.Madison's lawyers say their client's health has declined during his decades on death row, adding strokes and dementia have left Madison frequently confused and unable remember his crime. They also say he is unable to understand his looming execution.'It is undisputed that Mr. Madison suffers from vascular dementia as a result of multiple serious strokes in the last two years and no longer has a memory of the commission of the crime for which he is to be executed. His mind and body are failing,' wrote attorney Bryan Stevenson, of the Equal Justice Initiative.Stevenson argued the court should delay the execution to review whether executing someone in such a mental condition violates evolving standards of decency and a ban on cruel and unusual punishment.Courts have been divided over Madison's case.The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had ruled Madison incompetent and, in May 2016, halted Madison's execution seven hours before he was scheduled to receive a lethal injection. The U.S. Supreme Court opened the way in November for the execution to proceed. The court, in unsigned opinion, said then that testimony showed Madison 'recognizes that he will be put to death as punishment for the murder he was found to have committed,' even if he doesn't remember the killing itself.
  • Police tried to pull over a driver for a warrant Monday afternoon in north Tulsa.  The man ran to the back of a home near Pine and Tacoma.  “He started to try to kick in the back door of that residence,” said Officer Jeanne McKenzie with the Tulsa Police Department. “When he did that, he actually shot himself.” Police say he then picked up the shotgun and started to run around the side of the house.  Two officers fired their weapons. The man was pronounced dead at the hospital.
  • A North Carolina man who made headlines when he was caught for break-ins after winning a doughnut-eating contest has been arrested again. And this time he’s accused of stealing from a doughnut shop. The Virginian-Pilot newspaper reports 27-year-old Bradley Hardison of Elizabeth City was charged Thursday with stealing from a Dunkin’ Donuts in November. An Elizabeth City Police Department statement says he’s charged with felonies including breaking and entering and larceny. It wasn’t clear if he helped himself to any doughnuts. A phone listing for Hardison rang disconnected. The Virginian-Pilot reported that in 2014, Hardison won a doughnut-eating contest put on by Elizabeth City police while he was wanted on suspicion of several break-ins. Investigators said they arrested Hardison after his win prompted further scrutiny, and he was convicted, according to the paper.
  • Ending a three day stalemate that resulted in a federal government shutdown, Democrats on Monday dropped their filibuster of a temporary spending bill in the Senate, allowing the Congress to swiftly approve a resumption of government funding, which will put hundreds of thousands of federal workers back on the job immediately. “I am pleased that Democrats in Congress have come to their senses,” President Donald Trump said in a written statement issued by the White House, as Republicans said Democrats had folded under pressure. The Senate voted 81-18 to re-open the government. The House followed soon after, voting 266-150 in favor of the plan. The deal reached on Monday between the two parties not only allows government funding to resume, but will re-start negotiations on major budget issues, as well as the question of what should be done with illegal immigrant “Dreamers” in the United States. BREAKING: Trump says Democrats 'have come to their senses' on shutdown; he's open to immigration deal only if 'good for our country' — AP Politics (@AP_Politics) January 22, 2018 “We will make a long-term deal on immigration if, and only if, it is good for our country,” the President said, as he met separately with Senators of each party on the matter. When asked if they had been on the short end of the shutdown fight, Democrats emphasized the deal on immigration legislation, which will allow a Senate debate if there is no negotiated deal by February 8. “What other choice did we have?” said Sen. Bill Nelson (R-FL) to reporters. “Otherwise, to go in gridlock and shutdown for weeks? I mean, that’s not acceptable.” Lawmakers also approved language that will insure federal workers and members of the military will be paid, despite the funding lapse of the last three days. We have been talking for months about ways to address Congress’ unfinished business — military spending, disaster relief, healthcare, immigration, and border security. Now those talks can get going again. — Leader McConnell (@SenateMajLdr) January 22, 2018 While this agreement ended the shutdown, it didn’t solve the underlying problems which contributed to the high stakes political showdown. Both parties must still work out a deal on how much to spend on the federal government operations this year – President Trump wants a big increase in military spending, while Democrats want extra money for domestic programs. And then, there is immigration, which has bedeviled the Congress for years, and could again, as lawmakers try to work out a deal with something for both sides. “There’s a symmetric deal to be done here on these DACA young people,” said Sen. David Perdue (R-GA), who joined a small group of other GOP Senators in meeting with the President this afternoon on immigration. Perdue says the deal is simple – Democrats get protections for illegal immigrant “Dreamers,” while Republicans would get provisions “to provide border security, end chain migration issues, and end the diversity visa lottery.” The White House emphasized that as well. White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley: “Anything that relates to DACA … can be in the conversation, but it has to be tethered to the other three main points, including a wall” https://t.co/xjXCFx9PwD — CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) January 22, 2018 But to get something into law, lawmakers will need some help from the President. “What has been difficult is dealing with the White House, and not knowing where the President is,” said Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), as Republicans have complained publicly about conflicting signals on immigration from Mr. Trump. “Congress should act responsibly to allow these young people to stay,” Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) said of the “Dreamers.”
  • The “Crisco Cops” tried, but were unable to curb the enthusiasm of Philadelphia Eagles fans celebrating their first Super Bowl berth in 13 years. The Philadelphia Police Department, anticipating raucous fans, greased metal poles in the city with tubs of shortening, WPVI reported. It didn’t matter. Once the Eagles’ 38-7 victory against the Minnesota Vikings in Sunday’s NFC Championship game was official, fans took the streets to yell, honk horns, stand on cars -- and yes, climb up metal poles. Video captured one fan climbing a pole in Center City, WPVI reported. Before the game, the police had some fun with the situation. They tweeted, 'Now comes the time in the night where we must warn everyone about the dangers of saturated fats. Cheer for #Foles! Jeers for #Poles!” The Eagles will face the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots on Feb. 4 in Super Bowl LII in Minneapolis. They met in Super Bowl XXXIX, when the Patriots won 24-21 in Jacksonville, Florida.
  • In the third day of a government shutdown, the Senate moved Monday afternoon to approve a bill to fund the operations of the federal government, as Democrats dropped their opposition to a three week funding plan, accepting an assurance from Senate Republicans that there would be an upcoming debate on immigration issues involving illegal immigrants who were brought to this country at a young age by their parents. “The Trump shutdown will soon end,” said Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer. The deal hinged on the pledge of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to bring a bill to the floor of the Senate dealing with DACA, illegal immigrant “Dreamers” and general immigration enforcement matters, if no deal is reached in negotiations by February 8. “I’m encouraged by the commitments that Leader McConnell has made,” said Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE), who joined other Democrats in supporting a move to re-open the federal government. “I’m confident that we can get the 60 votes needed in the Senate for a DACA bill,” said Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer, who said the process will be “neutral and fair to all sides.” One way to look at this: Dems wanted to prove to base/activists 1) They are willing to go to mat for DREAMers and 2) They're still in minority and only have so much leverage. With both done, and situation deteriorating, time turn the gov't back on. — Alex Seitz-Wald (@aseitzwald) January 22, 2018 “We have a way to address the fate of the Dreamers, instead of waiting until March,” Schumer added, referencing the March 5 deadline set by President Donald Trump for action in Congress on that subject. But even with this agreement, there is certainly no guarantee that Democrats will get a bill that they like on immigration – and no assurance that whatever gets approved by Senators will be voted on in the House. And there were quickly signs that Republicans would not cave to Democrats on the issue. “We’re not going to go through this charade again where Democrats shut down the government because they’re putting the interests of illegal immigrants and foreigners over American citizens,” said Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR).