With hours before a possible closure, President Trump met Friday at the White House with the Senate minority leader, Charles E. Schumer (DN.Y.), to discuss an agreement to keep the government.
The meeting that involved two New Yorkers sounded the alarm bells among Republicans in Congress, who stand firm in support of the short-term spending bill passed by the House on Thursday night.
Neither Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) Neither House Speaker Paul D. Ryan attended the White House meeting, according to GOP attendees, without clarifying exactly what would Trump and Schumer do?  But at least one Senate Republican and some Democrats were optimistic that a crisis could be avoided.
"This is good news for Americans, the military, the recipients of DACA," Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) wrote on Twitter. "Let's see if two New Yorkers can agree on a good deal for the United States."
"Mr. Schumer is very aware of the priorities we share, so I am optimistic that the invitation was made with the idea of being constructive," said home-grown minority leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) To the journalists.
Republicans on Capitol Hill said White House aides assured them that a private agreement between Trump and Schumer would not be closed.
"He wants to listen to Schumer," said one Republican.
The Senate Democrats joined together against a short-term spending bill that does not offer protection to undocumented immigrant youth or address other priorities such as disaster relief, and the House threatened to lift the session, had already passed the law on Thursday night.
Trump and the Republicans, who control all levers of the government, faced the possibility of a closure on the first anniversary of his inauguration. According to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, Americans by a margin of 20 points blame Trump and the Republican Party for the Democrats if the government closes.
Ryan and McConnell met on Friday morning and decided to stand firm on the passage of House law.
There was uncertainty about the plans of House members to remain in Washington after handing over a "take it or leave it" bill to the Senate. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (Republican of California) said he would release his members to a planned one-week break, but then the leadership advised members that it was possible to vote on Friday.
The House passed the short-term law Thursday night with a vote of 230 to 197.
"We've done our job," McCarthy told reporters on Friday morning, saying it was a decision of Schumer "if he wants a close".
Republicans of the Senate, meanwhile, fell short of the 60 votes needed to advance the bill to finance the government until February 16. The imminent departure of the House further diminished the possibility that Congress extend government funds for a few days, as the Democrats have requested.
Trump, blaming the Democrats, tweeted that they would prefer to have "illegal immigration and weak borders" than to provide enough votes to keep the government open.
"Does the closure appear? We need more Republican victories in 2018!" Trump tweeted Friday morning.
It was not known for sure when the Senate would vote, but McConnell issued a political salvo, saying that the Democrats had been taken to a "box cannon" by Schumer McConnell said the Democrats would be responsible for a shutdown, even though the Republican Party controls Congress and the White House.
Late Thursday, nine Senate Democrats who had voted in favor of a short-term spending bill in December said they would not support the last proposed extension. They joined 30 other Democrats and a handful of Republicans to oppose the bill.
Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) Said on Thursday he was not "inclined" to vote for a short-term spending measure because the leaders did not keep their promise to hold a vote by the end of January on the legal protection of immigrant youth. undocumented On Friday morning, he said he preferred the Democrats' proposal for a mini-financing to allow more time for negotiations, an idea that Republican leaders rejected on Thursday.
The Director of the Office of Management and Budget Mick Mulvaney said he put the odds of a close at 50-50. He said he was instructing federal agencies to prepare for the possibility and that they would be given more flexibility to move money to continue services.
Marc Short, director of legislative affairs for Trump, said the Democrats' effort to put the immigration solution into the bill was unreasonable, given that the legislative text has not been drafted and the program does not expire until March.
"There is no DACA bill to vote, and there is no emergency at the moment," Short said.
A government shutdown that causes employee permits has never occurred under the unified control of Congress and the White House.
The Trump administration is developing plans to keep national parks and monuments open despite closure as a way to mitigate public anger, and although the military did not stop operating, troops would not receive payment unless Congress did. specifically authorize.
The last shutdown, in 2013, lasted 16 days as Republicans tried unsuccessfully to force changes in the Affordable Care Act. On January 30, Trump is scheduled to deliver his State of the Union address.
In a sign of preparations on Capitol Hill, Congress staff received a formal notice Friday morning that they can be suspended after midnight. Individual legislators will have to determine which assistants must report to work during the impasse.
While the senators waited for news about possible votes, the White House prepared to delay Trump's departure for its Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida until after a short-term bill on long-term spending. The president had intended to leave Washington on Friday afternoon before a lavish celebration of his first year in office planned for Saturday night.
With the Chamber scheduled to be out of session next week, several leaders planned trips abroad. Vice President Pence will travel to Israel and Egypt, Ryan will visit Iraq, and McCarthy House House Speaker Mark Meadows (RN.C.) will accompany Trump to the World Economic Forum in the Swiss tourist town of Davos.
McCarthy Spokesman Matt Sparks said the trip to Davos would be canceled in the event of a government shutdown, but that did not stop the leader of the Dutch minority Nancy Pelosi (D-California) from criticizing the trip.
"Each year the Republicans plan January so they can go to Davos, they want to spend the next week rubbing elitist friends instead of honoring their responsibilities to the American people," he said.
The stalemate reflected the efforts of the Republicans to force the Democrats into a series of uncomfortable votes aimed at dividing the moderates of the states that Trump won in 2016 of the party leaders and liberal White House. Ten Senate Democrats seek re-election in the states that voted for Trump, and Republicans believe that the current conflict could provide a powerful fodder for political attacks later in the year.
While the short-term bill did not include protections for "dreamers" illegally brought into the United States as children, Republicans attached a long-term extension of the Children's Health Insurance Program and delays to various taxes unpopular medical care. The Republican Party issued the spending vote, in part, as a choice between illegal immigrants and poor children, military troops and others who depend on government benefits.
In an interview with Fox News Channel on Friday morning, Ryan lashed out at Democratic senators for the federal government at the height of a shutdown.
"These Senate Democrats are holding our men and women hostage in uniform for an unrelated issue." The Senate Democrats hold child health care hostage for an unrelated issue … They are basically Holding the whole government hostage, "he said.
Encouraged by signs of division within the Republican Party, meanwhile, the Democrats came together to face what they consider a favorable ground: fight for popular policies against an unpopular president.
Pelosi said Friday that his caucus was "very strong" because of the unity they demonstrated when opposing Thursday's bill.
"All the priorities we insist on have strong bipartisan support," Pelosi said in a message sent to fellow Democrats.
Sean Sullivan and John Wagner contributed.