The president said on Wednesday that he will keep the government closed until he gets the funding for his border wall, The Daily Mail reported.
President Donald Trump said on Wednesday the shutdown will last ‘as long as it takes’ as the popular Smithsonian museums and National Zoo closed due to lack of funding.
‘I think the people of the country think I’m right,’ Trump said on day 12 of the shutdown during a Cabinet meeting, adding it will last ‘as long as it takes.’
The ripple effects are the partial shutdown are spreading out. The Smithsonian Museums – all 19 of them – and National Zoo have been closed.
‘Smithsonian museums, research centers and the National Zoo are closed. We will update our operating status as soon as the situation is resolved. We do not plan to update social media other than to inform you of our operating status,’ the Smithsonian Institute announced on Wednesday.
They are popular tourist destinations – about 82,000 people per day visit the museums and the zoo with its popular panda exhibit.
Additionally the panda cam has been turned off during the shutdown, cutting off its widely-viewed livestream.
Zoo animals are being fed during the shutdown.
‘A shutdown will not affect the Zoo’s commitment to the safety of staff and the standard of excellence in animal care,’ the zoo said in a statement.
Smithsonian exhibits are free to visit and officials managed to stretch funding remaining from last year into keeping the institutions open after funding expired on Dec. 21.
But, on Wednesday, they were unable to keep the doors open.
Trump’s firm stance on the shut down came ahead of his Wednesday afternoon meeting with Congressional leaders, which includes Democratic Leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi.
In his remarks during his Cabinet meeting, the president refused to say whether he would sign a government funding bill if he received less than his $5 billion request to fund his border wall.
Question: "How long you willing to keep the government shut down?"
— The Hill (@thehill) January 2, 2019