It's the first new Congress to convene amid a partial government shutdown, now in its 13th day over Trump's demands for money for a wall along the U.S-Mexico border.
While Trump made clear during his press conference that talk on DACA (the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program) would have to wait and that he was trying to negotiate with Congress on the wall, the conversations underscored rising Republican anxiety about just how to exit the shutdown.
Trump continues to demand $5.6 billion in wall funding, and has rejected a back-channel compromise offered by Vice President Mike Pence for half the amount.
Democratic Representative Lucille Roybal-Allard, speaking to reporters late yesterday, argued that funding a border wall, which ultimately could cost more than US$24 billion, would hamper other, more important national security protections.
In one of the first acts of the new Congress, the House passed a short-term bill funding the Department of Homeland Security for about a month and a measure providing money for every other federal department or agency now without funding through the rest of the fiscal year, which goes through September.
The shutdown is affecting about a quarter of the portion of the federal government funded by Congress, since the Pentagon and major agencies including the Department of Health and Human Services have already been funded through September 30 by spending bills passed by Congress earlier in the year.
The Republican-run Senate said it might not even vote on the legislation.
Pelosi elected Speaker as Democrats take control of House of Representatives
The stopgap measure is meant to give lawmakers and the White House 30 days to negotiate.
Newly-elected House Speaker Nancy Pelosi criticized the proposed border wall as "waste of money".
"Without a wall, you can not have border security", Trump said, flanked by border patrol agents and members of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
"We have no illusions that our work will be easy", Pelosi said, but she added that "when we disagree we respect each other, and we respect the truth". "In that spirit, Democrats will be offering the Senate Republican appropriations legislation to re-open government later today - to meet the needs of the American people, and to protect our borders", she said. Gridlock near-certain Indeed, progressives will be eager to push back with greater effect against an administration they believe has overstepped its authority and abused power in the almost two years since Trump's inauguration. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., reiterated Thursday that the Senate will only take up government spending legislation that Trump supports. They also said years of Republican advertising painting Pelosi as an out-of-touch radical had hurt Democrats' chances to win in moderate districts. Republicans now have 199 seats in the 435-member House after the November elections. United States, introduced by freshman Rep. Colin Allred, D-Texas.
"The fact is a wall is an immorality".
"We're talking about border security", Pelosi said in an interview with Today on January 3.
Credit rating agency Moody's said the shutdown would cause minimal US economic and credit market disruption but there could be a more severe impact on financial markets and the broad economy if the closure is protracted.