Two bills aimed at ending the government shutdown failed in the U.S. Senate on Thursday, meaning the government shutdown, already the longest in the history of the country will continue for the foreseeable future.
One bill, sponsored by Republicans, provided billions of dollars President Donald Trump was demanding for his proposed border wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. The other measure put forward by Democrats, ended the funding lapse for the government without money for the border wall.
Sen. Mitt Romney voted for both measures on Thursday afternoon, joining five other Republicans to cross the aisle to support the Democratic measure. Sen. Mike Lee voted against both measures, claiming both bills were flawed.
“If this had been a vote to begin debate on a deal to end the shutdown, I would have happily voted yes,” said Lee in a statement. “This bill as is simply does not do enough to reform our immigration system or address the crisis at our southern border.”
Romney said he voted in favor of both bills because he wants to see the shutdown end and government workers get paid again.
“It’s affecting our economy and, more importantly, it has an effect on the lives of our citizens to not work and be paid,” said Romney. “It’s now going to be up to Republican leadership and Democratic leadership to come together and begin to negotiate. We’ve got to have the leaders of both parties sit down with the president and work out a deal that deals with border security and gets this government open.”