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Trump rejected a call by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, one of his staunchest congressional supporters, to end the longest government closure in American history and reopen shuttered agencies for three weeks while he holds more talks with Democratic leaders about his plan for a wall along the 3,200-kilometer southern USA border.

The announcement comes as a group of bipartisan lawmakers in the Problem Solvers Caucus is scheduled to meet with the president on Wednesday to negotiate border wall funding.

The House and Senate said they will cancel a recess later this week if the shutdown continues, which seemed likely.

The president told reporters upon returning from his trip to New Orleans that the meal was meant to be "a little fun". "And I would think that's their favorite food". But Democrats nearly immediately blanched at the invitation, some saying Monday night that they had no intention to break bread with Trump.

She then suggested they work together to determine a suitable date for the address after the government reopens if the shutdown doesn't end this week. They hope to reach a resolution before a Tuesday deadline, when they'll need to prepare the next round of paychecks for workers who have been seeing zeros on their pay slips.

"Do we have no food for you, because we have a shutdown?"

Because of the federal government shutdown, the White House staff was lacking and therefore the traditional championship dinner was turned on its head.

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said she was working with the White House and Congress to pass legislation to fund the Coast Guard.

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She framed her appointment as a big achievement by pointing out how exclusive the House committee is - "one of just four".

Coons blamed the impasse on border wall funding that led to the shutdown on Trump.

"Hopefully a few more", he said.

Some Democrats cited scheduling conflicts for their reason for not attending, including moderate Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla., a leader of the moderate House Democratic Blue Dog Coalition.

"I know there has been some impact, but at the same time we're focused on the long term economic principles the president has laid out", she said.

In a series of tweets Monday morning, Trump continued to try to shame Democrats for not negotiating with him over the shutdown, though it's not clear he's offering anything different than when talks crumbled last week.

It is not clear how much the president paid for the order, but he said he did not want to postpone the event because of the ongoing shutdown. Negotiations between the White House and Democrats have stalled. They'll make some salads.

JPMorgan's Jamie Dimon told reporters Tuesday that he expects USA economic growth to slow to nothing this quarter if the government shutdown continues.

Rep. Jim Himes of CT, another centrist Democrat, said the White House is "grasping at straws".


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