Reuters US Domestic News Summary
Following is a summary of current US domestic news briefs.
Trump threatens to use emergency power to build wall, end shutdown
Flanked by border agents who are going without paychecks during a government shutdown, U.S. President Donald Trump threatened on Thursday to use emergency powers to bypass Congress to pay for a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. Trump flew to the Texas border with Mexico to try to bolster his case for the border wall as a partial U.S. government shutdown tied to the issue stretched into its 20th day with no sign of new talks to resolve the impasse.
'We want our pay!' furloughed U.S. workers shout at White House
Hundreds of furloughed federal employees chanting "We want our pay!" marched on the White House on Thursday, the 20th day of a partial government shutdown over U.S. President Donald Trump's demand for border wall funding. "Stop the shutdown!" protesters shouted in the bitter cold at the union-organized demonstration that started at the AFL-CIO headquarters and ended in front of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, where they hoisted signs reading "Trump: End the Shutdown" and "Not a strike - we want to work."
'El Chapo' computer whiz tells court of 'nervous breakdown' after helping FBI
Self-described computer whiz Christian Rodriguez told jurors on Thursday how he had a nervous breakdown from the stress of cooperating with the FBI to hack into the secure communication system he built for accused Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman. On trial in U.S. federal court in Brooklyn since November, Guzman, 61, was extradited to the United States in 2017 to face charges of trafficking cocaine, heroin and other drugs into the country as leader of Mexico's Sinaloa Cartel.
Donations keep Death Valley National Park partly open during shutdown
California’s Death Valley National Park, famed for its record-breaking heat, is keeping its visitor center and some restrooms open during the partial U.S. government shutdown with donations from a non-profit group and two hotels, a spokeswoman said on Thursday. The Death Valley Natural History Association is funding salaries for a handful of rangers to work at the Furnace Creek Visitor Center, park spokeswoman Abby Wines said. Two hotels were covering the costs of keeping the toilets open.
Wisconsin girl, 13, found alive three months after murder of parents
A 13-year-old Wisconsin girl, missing since her parents were discovered shot dead in their home three months ago, was found on Thursday, malnourished and dirty but alive, after apparently fleeing her captor in a remote community, police and media said. One man, who has not been identified by police, was in custody, authorities said, in connection with the case of James Closs, 56, and his wife Denise, 46, whose bodies were found on Oct. 15 while their daughter, Jayme, was missing.
Factbox: Impact on U.S. government widens on 21st day of shutdown
A shutdown of about a quarter of the U.S. government reached its 21st day on Friday, tying it with the longest shutdown to date, and many of the 800,000 employees who have been furloughed or who are working without pay missed their first paychecks. The White House and congressional Democrats remain divided over Republican President Donald Trump's demand for money for a border wall, even as the president warned in Texas on Thursday that he may use emergency powers to bypass Congress and get billions of dollars to build it.
Law enforcement agencies squeezed by U.S. government shutdown
Federal law enforcement agencies that keep Americans safe are starting to feel the strain of the U.S. government shutdown, in its 21st day, with agents working for no pay and investigations delayed, law enforcement officials said. Training events have been canceled and travel cut back, with President Donald Trump and Congress unable to end the partial shutdown affecting a quarter of the government in a funding standoff over Trump's proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall.
Las Vegas police seek DNA from soccer star Ronaldo in sexual assault inquiry
Police in Nevada have formally asked Italian authorities to obtain a DNA sample from Portuguese soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo in the investigation of accusations that he raped a woman a decade ago in Las Vegas, police said on Thursday. Ronaldo, 33, widely regarded as one of the greatest soccer players of all time, has maintained he is innocent of rape and said through his Las Vegas lawyer on Thursday that the sexual encounter in question was consensual.
Florida governor vows to hold officials 'accountable' amid reports of planned suspension of sheriff
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis pledged on Thursday to speak about government accountability at the headquarters of the Broward County sheriff, following speculation he would suspend the official over the police response to the Parkland mass shooting. DeSantis planned to speak about "holding government officials accountable" on Friday in Fort Lauderdale, at the offices of Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel, DeSantis' office said in a statement.
California to spend big on education, healthcare in $144 billion budget
California Governor Gavin Newsom capped a busy first week in office on Thursday by proposing $144.2 billion in general fund spending for the most populous U.S. state, highlighted by increased expenditures in healthcare and education. Newsom's fiscal blueprint assumes continued economic growth of at least 3 percent a year but cautions a recession could transform an existing budget surplus of more than $21 billion left by his predecessor and fellow Democrat, Jerry Brown, into a $40 billion deficit over three years.