Pence to travel to Middle East even if US government shuts down

WASHINGTON - Vice President Mike Pence will travel to the Middle East for talks with the leaders of Egypt, Israel and Jordan even if the US government shuts down at midnight on Friday because the trip is vital to US national security, the White House said.
"The vice president's meetings ... are integral to America's national security and diplomatic objectives, therefore the vice president will travel to the Middle East as scheduled," said Alyssa Farah, a spokeswoman for Pence.