US President Donald Trump has threatened again to declare a national emergency to fund a border wall without Congress’s approval.
“I have the absolute right to declare a national emergency,” he told reporters.
The White House has denied reports the possibility of diverting funds set aside for reconstruction projects was being explored.
The government has been in partial shutdown for 20 days, leaving about 800,000 federal employees without pay.
President Trump refuses to sign legislation to fund and reopen the government if it does not include $5.7bn (£4.5bn) for a physical barrier along the US-Mexico border.