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Shutdown drags on

Having broken the 30-day mark, the United States government shutdown—which is preventing much research and withholding pay from hundreds of thousands of federal employees—still shows little sign of ending soon.

Two Senate bills intended to end, or at least suspend, the shutdown are due to be put to a vote on 24 January. One, from president Donald Trump, includes a request for $5.7 billion for the proposed border barrier with Mexico that is the cause of the standoff. The other, from Democrats, would reinstate the government, without barrier funding, until 8 February as a temporary reprieve.

However, the intractable party divisions that have sustained the shutdown since it began on 22 December 2018 look set to prevent either bill from passing.

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