TRUMP’S WALL: “steel barrier” OR “concrete wall”?

As the partial shutdown of the federal government enters its 17th day, the end does not appear to be in sight. Over the weekend, negotiations between the White House and Congress failed to make progress, with President Trump’s insistence on $5.7 billion in border funding still the principal sticking point (unsurprisingly, the administration’s offer to build a “steel barrier” instead of a “concrete wall” has not washed with newly empowered House Democrats, who have blasted the whole enterprise as immoral). Shutdowns are always tricky stories for journalists, with complex technical negotiations often hiding behind political grandstanding. This shutdown—now the third-longest in US history—is even trickier, with lies, misleading statistics, and the volatile nature of Trump’s decision-making all thrown into the mix.