Vote looms to end US shutdown

US Capitol under cloudy skiesImage copyright Reuters Image caption Nearly 700,000 employees could be sent home without pay Hundreds of thousands of federal workers are waking up in the US, unable to work because of a government shutdown. The US Senate has failed to reach a temporary budget deal to keep it open. Some employees will not be paid until the stalemate is resolved. A vote will take place at noon in Washington (17:00 GMT) on whether to re-open government.Immigration remains one of the main sticking points between Republicans and Democrats. Democrats have refused to back a temporary budget deal until their concerns on immigration reform are dealt with. Essential federal services are still running across the country, but non-essential workers are not required to report to work.
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Media captionGovernment workers on what happens during a shutdown Why has the government shut down? At midnight on Friday, lawmakers failed to agree on a spending bill.The bill was not a plan for funding for the whole of 2018, but would have kept things running until the middle of next month. Efforts to reach a compromise ahead of the working week failed in a rare Senate session late on Sunday. A vote to end the shutdown was postponed until midday on Monday, meaning many federal government offices will not open as the shutdown enters its third day. Why the US government has shut down[1] White House voicemail blames Democrats[2] Under Senate rules, the bill needs 60 votes in the 100-member chamber.
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Media captionDonald Trump's shutdown voicemail There are 50 Republican senators who are present and able to vote in the upper chamber on Monday, but at least 10 Democrats are needed to pass a budget. Republican Senator John McCain is away from Washington to receive cancer treatment. Democrats want President Trump to negotiate over immigration as part of a budget deal, but Republicans say no agreement is possible while federal government services are closed. Republicans want funding for border security - including a proposed border wall with Mexico - and immigration reforms, as well as increased military spending. On Saturday, Mr Trump said the "nuclear option" of a simple majority vote was necessary to end the impasse.

End of Twitter post by @realDonaldTrump


More on Trump's first year


What does a shutdown mean?

It means no pay for those federal employees who are "furloughed" - on unpaid leave - even though their workplaces are not open.

The last government shutdown was in 2013, and lasted for 16 days.

It cost the government $2bn in lost productivity and led to "significant negative effects on the economy", the OMB said at the time.

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Free coffee for federal workers near the White House during the shutdown After the 2013 shutdown, Congress passed a bill ensuring employees who were on unpaid leave received pay cheques for the time they missed.However, receiving pay is not guaranteed this time as Congress would have to approve it again. The shutdown began on the first anniversary of President Trump's inauguration.His trip to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, has also been called into question. What's closed and what's open? Most staff in the departments of housing, environment, education and commerce will be staying at home on Monday.[6] Half of workers in the treasury, health, defence and transportation departments will also not be going to work. But essential services that protect "life or human property" will continue, including national security, postal services, air traffic control, some medical services, disaster assistance, prisons, taxation and electricity generation. And the Trump administration said it planned to keep national parks open - their closure in the 2013 shutdown provoked an angry public reaction. However, many rangers and staffers will not go into work. The Statue of Liberty was closed on Sunday but the governor of New York said he will use state funds to keep the historic landmark open from Monday. However, Independence Hall which is home to the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia, will be closed along with other national landmarks. The defence department issued guidance saying that all military active duty personnel will continue to work[7] without pay. Other closures include: US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will discontinue routine establishment inspections and other food safety activities during the shutdown Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will cease operations of disease prevention programs but will continue to respond to seasonal influenza outbreaks Why can the two sides not agree?
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Media caption"Americans are singularly unimpressed" This is the first time a government shutdown has happened while one party, the Republicans, controls both Congress and the White House. Friday's vote fell 50-49, far short of the 60 needed to advance the bill.This is due to a number of key disagreements. Democrats have demanded protection from deportation of more than 700,000 undocumented immigrants who entered the US as children. "I hope it is just a matter of hours or days.But we need to have a substantive answer, and the only person who can lead us to that is President Trump.This is his shutdown," Democratic Senator Dick Durbin told the CBS network on Saturday.
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Media captionThe missing - consequences of Trump's immigration crackdown But Vice-President Mike Pence reiterated his party's stance in a speech to US troops in the Middle East on Sunday. "We're not going to reopen negotiations on illegal immigration until they reopen the government and give you, our soldiers and your families, the benefits and wages you've earned," he said. Have you been affected by the government shutdown?Please share your experience with us by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..[8] Please include a contact number if you are willing to speak to a BBC journalist.You can also contact us in the following ways: WhatsApp:+447555 173285 Tweet:@BBC_HaveYourSay[9] Upload your pictures / video here[10] Send an SMS or MMS to 61124 or +44 7624 800 100

References

  1. ^ Why the US government has shut down (www.bbc.co.uk)
  2. ^ White House voicemail blames Democrats (www.bbc.co.uk)
  3. ^ Skip Twitter post by @realDonaldTrump (www.bbc.co.uk)
  4. ^ January 21, 2018 (twitter.com)
  5. ^ 10 unexpected consequences of the 2013 shutdown (www.bbc.co.uk)
  6. ^ Most staff in the departments of housing, environment, education and commerce will be staying at home on Monday. (www.nytimes.com)
  7. ^ all military active duty personnel will continue to work (www.defense.gov)
  8. ^ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (www.bbc.co.uk)
  9. ^ @BBC_HaveYourSay (twitter.com)
  10. ^ here (upload.news.bbc.cs.streamuk.com)

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Guy Hedger shooting: Two men jailed for executive's murder

Guy HedgerImage copyright Dorset Police Image caption Guy Hedger was at home with his husband when he was killed

Two men have been jailed for murdering an executive in a botched burglary at his luxury home.

Guy Hedger, 61, was shot dead in the raid at Ashley, Dorset, in the early hours of 30 April 2017.

Jason Baccus, from Bournemouth, and Kevin Downton, from Winterborne Stickland, were convicted unanimously after a two-month trial at Winchester Crown Court.

The pair have been sentenced to life in prison with a minimum of 34 years.

Police said a breakthrough in the case came from DNA found on cigarette butts near the murder scene.

Baccus, 42, and Downton, 40, were also found guilty of aggravated burglary, possessing a firearm and one count of burglary.

They previously pleaded guilty to another count of burglary.

During sentencing, judge Mr Justice Jay described the burglary as "amateurish and incompetent".

Image copyright Dorset Police Image caption Jason Baccus (left) and Kevin Downton have been sentenced to life in prison with a minimum of 34 years

In a victim impact statement, Mr Hedger's husband Simon-Pierre Hedger-Cooper, known as Si, said the final moments of Guy's life were "full of terror, fear and pain".

He said the shooting had "radically changed my life forever - an experience from which I will never recover".

"My life feels empty and full of sadness and darkness," he said.

"Deep and searing pain of never being able to properly say goodbye."

Image copyright Dorset Police Image caption A gun was among items recovered from the River Stour during the police investigation

Scott Keeping, 44, from Bournemouth, was found not guilty of murder as well as the other above charges.

His wife Helen Keeping, 40, also known as Helen Cooper, was found not guilty of two counts of assisting an offender.

The trial heard how Mr Hedger and his husband were confronted in their bedroom by two men wearing balaclavas and armed with a sawn-off shotgun.

Mr Hedger was shot when his husband hit a panic button, triggering alarms.


Analysis:Peter Cooke, BBC South home affairs correspondent

Image caption Guy Hedger's house is in a cul-de-sac in Ashley, Dorset

Police admitted for the first 24 hours after the shooting they had no idea who may have been involved.It was what they called a "cold start".

But the major breakthrough came when they found discarded cigarette butts around the corner from Guy Hedger's home.

They contained the DNA of Jason Baccus.Police were then able to identify his known associates and track their movements at the time of the shooting.This led them to Kevin Downton, and Scott and Helen Keeping.

Without the discovery of this crucial forensic link officers said it may have taken them much longer to identify those responsible.


In a video shown to the court, Mr Hedger-Cooper said:"I heard an almighty boom, shot, and Guy said 'I have been hit, I have been hit'."

Mr Hedger, the brand and marketing director of insurance firm Liverpool Victoria, died two hours later in hospital from a gunshot wound to the chest.

Diamond jewellery and watches were among items worth more than £120,000 which were stolen in the burglary, near Ringwood.

The court heard the intruders also removed an iPhone and landline in a "callous" attempt to stop Mr Hedger-Cooper calling the emergency services.

Image copyright Dorset Police Image caption Watches stolen from Guy Hedger's home were among items found in undergrowth next to a public footpath in Bournemouth

Baccus told the court he had committed domestic and commercial burglaries in the past to fund his drink and drug habits.

In evidence, he also said he had "spent most of my adult life in prison," having started shoplifting at the age of five.

In recent periods out of prison he would stay with Mr and Mrs Keeping at their home in Bournemouth, the court heard.

Police said some of the stolen valuables were found hidden in a chimney breast of their flat.

'Buy cocaine'

Downton, who worked as a carpenter, claimed he had been shopping for a birthday present for his daughter at Toys R Us in Poole on the evening of the murder.

He said he visited "two or three friends" on the way home but declined to name them.

He met fellow inmate Baccus in prison more than a decade ago and would buy cocaine from him, the court heard.

Downton told the court the pair committed commercial burglaries together but denied having ever burgled a home.

Image copyright Dorset Police Image caption Jewellery stolen during the burglary was found in undergrowth at the side of a public footpath in Bournemouth

Sentencing the pair, the judge said:"Guy Hedger died in his bedroom when he was shot by you, Kevin Downton.You were an enthusiastic participant.

"You removed two phones from the bedside table.You have a cold ruthless streak and have shown no remorse."

He described Baccus as a "career criminal" who "recruited" Downton as the gunman, and who had also shown no remorse....

Image copyright Dorset Police Image caption A sports bag containing two Louis Vuitton bags stolen during the burglary was found on wasteland in Bournemouth

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Defiant UKIP leader Henry Bolton aims to 'drain the swamp'

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Media captionHenry Bolton says he will not be quitting as UKIP leader, adding:"It is time to drain the swamp".

Henry Bolton has insisted he will not quit as UKIP leader, saying it is "time to drain the swamp" of malcontents within the party.

He said UKIP's national executive committee, which passed a vote of no confidence in him, was "not fit for purpose" and must be reformed.

Speaking in Folkestone, he urged UKIP to put an end to factional infighting.

It came after a dozen senior figures quit their roles, including Mr Bolton's deputy and assistant deputy.

The local government, education, trade and immigration spokesmen have all resigned as Mr Bolton defied growing calls to quit over offensive texts sent by his ex-girlfriend.

Ex-education spokesman David Kurten said he believed Mr Bolton had "no chance of surviving" a vote of party members, saying he did not know what the leader "hoped to achieve" by staying on.

In a statement to the media, Mr Bolton said he "respected" the party's constitutional process, which will see party members decide his future in the coming weeks.

But he said the decision to force a vote was a "distraction" from what should be the party's focus on May's local elections and achieving "true independence" for the UK after Brexit.

"I repeat I shall not be resigning as party leader."

'Lost confidence'

He said he had lost confidence in the NEC which he said was unable to take the party forward and whose shortcomings he suggested had been recognised by previous leaders.

"The NEC requires significant and urgent reform.To that end, again during the coming weeks, I shall be proposing a new party constitution, with a newly constituted and reformed NEC.

"Likewise, it is now time to put an end to the factional in-fighting within the party and to remove those who have been a part of that.In a single phrase, it is time to 'Drain the Swamp'."

Mr Bolton, who has been under pressure over some of his former girlfriend's comments, has said another leadership contest could be financially ruinous for the party, which has staged three contests in the last 18 months.

He has also said he has ended the "romantic element" of his relationship with Jo Marney after it emerged that in the past she had sent a text saying Prince Harry's fiancee Meghan Markle would "taint" the Royal Family, leading to accusations of racism.


UKIP's leadership changes

Image copyright Reuters Image caption Nigel Farage was succeeded as UKIP leader by Diane James - he then took over as interim leader when she quit
  • Nigel Farage:UKIP's long-serving leader announced his resignation on 4 July 2016, saying his "political ambition has been achieved" by the Brexit vote
  • Diane James:Lasted less than three weeks after being elected in September 2016
  • Nigel Farage:Returned as interim leader in October 2016
  • Paul Nuttall:Elected on 28 November 2016, but quit the following June after UKIP's general election collapse
  • Henry Bolton:Elected on 29 September.Is facing resignations and a vote of no confidence

But Mr Bolton has so far failed to convince many of the senior figures in the party - with the NEC's vote of no confidence in him on Sunday followed by a series of resignations on Monday.

In his resignation letter as trade spokesman William Dartmouth, a South West England MEP, told Mr Bolton his position was "untenable".

"When you became leader you said that you would make the party successful," he said."If you still feel that way then you should resign forthwith."

Deputy leader Margot Parker, who is an East Midlands MEP, said Mr Bolton's "personal life took over the job he was elected to do".

She added:"It would be quicker and cleaner if he came to the conclusion he could go sooner rather than later.

"This is taking time away from doing the job.This puts the party in a limbo situation."

Following the vote of no confidence party members will now be given a vote on whether Mr Bolton, who became leader of UKIP in September 2017, should remain in post.

Image copyright Getty Images / @Jo_Marney Image caption Mr Bolton said he split with his girlfriend Jo Marney after the 25-year-old's texts about Meghan Markle came to light

Under UKIP rules, an emergency general meeting must be staged within 28 days to endorse or reject the no confidence vote.

Members will be told about when and where it will be held in the next 10 days.

UKIP, which has long campaigned to leave the EU, came top in the 2014 European elections and got the third largest vote share in the 2015 general election with 12.6% - but this plummeted to 1.8% in June - the first general election since the UK voted for Brexit.

Neil Hamilton, the party's leader in Wales, said:"He should now resign from UKIP immediately...if he forces us to hold an EGM, he will only humiliate himself further."

Gerard Batten, UKIP MEP for London, said Mr Bolton's position was "untenable" and that the controversy was "damaging" UKIP, and he offered to step in as interim leader....

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