WASHINGTON -- The No. 3 Democrat in the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday raised the possibility of approving $5.7 billion in funding to secure the U.S. border though various means but not by building a wall.
Referring to Republican President Donald Trump's demand for $5.7 billion to build a barrier along the U.S.-Mexico border, U.S. House Majority Whip James Clyburn told reporters, "We see ourselves fulfilling that request" with a "smart wall."
The consideration comes as U.S. lawmakers this week seek to forge a path out of the partial government shutdown as it entered its 33rd day on Wednesday.
House Democratic leaders' consideration of the figure is a jump from the earlier appropriations of $1.3 billion that they had earlier supported.
Trump has said the $5.7 billion would be for the wall in addition to other funds for border security, and that he will not back any measure that does not include his long-promised barrier. His demand led to the closure of about one-quarter of the government last month due to lack of funding.
Photos of the week: 1/11 - 1/18
Photos of the week: 1/11 - 1/18
An Air Force bus intended to be used by members of Congress sits outside the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019. President Donald Trump informed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that he postponed a trip she planned to take to Belgium, Egypt and Afghanistan because of the partial government shutdown, telling her little more than an hour before her departure that she should stay in Washington to negotiate. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun (C) accompanied by Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland (R) and Saba Abbas, general counsellor of COSTI refugee service agency, arrives at Toronto Pearson International Airport in Toronto, Ontario, Canada January 12, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Osorio TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
President Donald Trump talks to the media about the table full of fast food in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, Monday, Jan. 14, 2019, for the reception for the Clemson Tigers. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
Civilians flee as security forces aim their weapons at the buildings of a hotel complex in Nairobi, Kenya, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. Extremists launched a deadly attack on a luxury hotel in Kenya's capital Tuesday, sending people fleeing in panic as explosions and heavy gunfire reverberated through the complex. A police officer said he saw bodies, "but there was no time to count the dead." (AP Photo/Khalil Senosi)
NEW YORK - JANUARY 15: The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and guest Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand during Wednesday's January 15, 2019 show. (Photo by Scott Kowalchyk/CBS via Getty Images)
Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May leaves Downing Street in London, Britain, January 15, 2019. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A Naga Sadhu or Hindu holy man waits for devotees inside his camp during "Kumbh Mela" or the Pitcher Festival, in Prayagraj, previously known as Allahabad, India January 17, 2019. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - JANUARY 16: The Philadelphia Flyers mascot Gritty celebrates a Flyers goal against the Boston Bruins at the Wells Fargo Center on January 16, 2019 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
A large, circular ice floe spins slowly in the Presumpscot River in Westbrook, Maine, U.S., January 16, 2019. REUTERS/Brian Snyder TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 15: U.S. Attorney General nominee William Barr is surrounded by photographers during a break at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee January 15, 2019 in Washington, DC. Barr, who previously served as Attorney General under President George H. W. Bush, was confronted about his views on the investigation being conducted by special counsel Robert Mueller. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
A veterinarian checks an African lion cub at the University in Wroclaw, Poland January 15, 2019. Agencja Gazeta/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. POLAND OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN POLAND. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY?
Snow from Winter Storm Gia falls over the White House as the partial government shutdown becomes the longest in U.S. history in Washington, U.S., January 13, 2019. REUTERS/Carlos Barria TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Faith Rodgers reacts as she reads a statement to reporters with attorney Gloria Allred during a news conference regarding allegations of sexual misconduct relating to musician R Kelly, in New York, January 14, 2019. REUTERS/Jeenah Moon TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Chef Creole owner Wilkinson Sejour hands out free hot meals to TSA workers at his restaurant at Miami International Airport, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019, in Miami. The restaurant is offering free lunch and dinner to federal airport employees affected by the government shutdown. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
KRUEN, GERMANY - JANUARY 12: A fireman clears a roof following heavy snowfall in the area on January 12, 2019 in Kruen, Germany. Exceptionally high levels of snow have closed roads and ski resorts, triggered avalanches and cut villages off across southern Germany and much of Austria. (Photo by Philipp Guelland/Getty Images)
Federal workers left unpaid or furloughed collect a free bag of groceries from Kraft Foods on the 27th day of the partial government shutdown in Washington, U.S., January 17, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
A migrant from Honduras, part of a caravan of thousands from Central America trying to reach the United States, helps a child to jumps the fence to cross it illegally from Mexico into the U.S., in Tijuana, Mexico, January 13, 2019. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Family members follow the flag draped coffin of Davis Police Officer Natalie Corona before funeral services for Corona at the University of California, Davis, Friday, Jan. 18, 2019, in Davis, Calif. Corona was was shot and killed Jan. 10, responding to scene of a three-car crash in Davis. Police say gunman Kevin Douglas Limbaugh, 48, not involved in the crash, rode up on a bicycle and without warning, opened fire on Corona. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Meghan, Duchess of Sussex speaks with members of the public during a walkabout of Hamilton Square as part of a visit to a new sculpture marking the 100th anniversary of war poet Wilfred Owen's death, in Birkenhead, northwest England, Monday, Jan. 14, 2019. (Charlotte Graham/Pool Photo via AP)
A handout image released by the White House shows a letter from U.S. President Donald Trump to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi informing her that he is postponing her trip to Belgium, Egypt and Afghanistan over the partial government shutdown that was sent and released to the media in Washington, U.S., January 17, 2019. REUTERS/The White House/Handout
Children react next to a security robot patrolling inside a residential compound in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia, China January 18, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. CHINA OUT. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
HARBIN, CHINA - JANUARY 13: Penguins visit Harbin ice and snow world park during the 35th Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival on January 13, 2019 in Harbin, Heilongjiang Province of China. (Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images)
A woman rides a horse through flames during the annual "Luminarias" celebration on the eve of Saint Anthony's day, Spain's patron saint of animals, in the village of San Bartolome de Pinares, northwest of Madrid, Spain, January 16, 2019. REUTERS/Susana Vera TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND - JANUARY 14: Nina Sun stands beside a unicorn lantern and a Chinese dragon during the launch of the Chinese New Year Edinburgh festival on January 14, 2019 in Edinburgh, Scotland. A full programme to celebrate Chinese New Year will take place in from 2 to 17 February, across Scotland’s capital as locals and visitors celebrate the Year of the Pig. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)
Parkland school shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz enters the courtroom for a hearing at the Broward Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. Cruz returned court this week for hearings on the Valentine's Day 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., and on accusations he assaulted a corrections officer. (Amy Beth Bennett/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP, Pool)
GUATEMALA CITY, GUATEMALA - JANUARY 17: A migrant gestures as Honduran migrants from the new 'migrant caravan' wait to depart, in the back of a truck, to drive them toward the Guatemala-Mexico border on January 17, 2019 in Guatemala City, Guatemala. A local business owner donated two trucks for the migrants, saying he did so for 'the love of God'. More than one thousand Hondurans have set off toward the United States on foot or in vehicles in recent days. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - Hawaii's Billy Kemper falls off his board during the Da Hui Backdoor shootout at the Pipeline on Oahu's North Shore on January 13, 2019. (Photo by brian bielmann / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE (Photo credit should read BRIAN BIELMANN/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 17: U.S. Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks during a weekly news conference January 17, 2019 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Speaker Pelosi discussed various topics included the ongoing government shut down. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
SANTA MONICA, CA - JANUARY 13: Glenn Close (L), winner of Best Actress for 'The Wife,' and Lady Gaga, winner of Best Actress for 'A Star Is Born,' attend the 24th annual Critics' Choice Awards at Barker Hangar on January 13, 2019 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for The Critics' Choice Awards)
SAN ANTONIO, TX - JANUARY 12: Julian Castro, former U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary and San Antonio Mayor, announces his candidacy for president in 2020 at Plaza Guadalupe on January 12, 2019 in San Antonio, Texas. If successful, Castro would be the first Hispanic candidate to win the White House. (Photo by Edward A. Ornelas/Getty Images)
CHENGDU, CHINA - JANUARY 14: Thousands of Ofo sharing bicycles are seen piled up at an open area on January 14, 2019 in Chengdu, Sichuan Province of China. (Photo by Yan Lei/VCG via Getty Images)
Snow falls on a honor guard soldier before the welcoming ceremony for Slovenia's President Borut Pahor at the Cotroceni presidential palace in Bucharest, Romania, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)
Workers tie a rope to a pile of freshly cut wood loaded on a truck in Peshawar, Pakistan January 16, 2019. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
MADRID, SPAIN - JANUARY 17: A priest blesses a bird during Saint Anthony's day at San Anton Church on January 17, 2019 in Madrid, Spain. During San Anton day, (the patron saint of the animals) people bring their pets to some Catholic churches around the country to have their animals blessed. (Photo by Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images)
A boy plays with a weapon on the top of an army vehicle during Children's Day celebration at a military facility in Bangkok, Thailand January 12, 2019. REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Juan Oliphant, right, and Ocean Ramsey, co-founders of One Ocean Diving and Research, look at footage their encounter with a great white shark, Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019 in Haleiwa, Hawaii. Ramsey told The Associated Press on Thursday that images of her swimming next to a huge great white shark prove that these top predators should be protected, not feared. (AP Photo/Caleb Jones)
New experimental police vehicle pictured in marge of a student strike action, organized by 'Youth For Climate', urging pupils to skip classes to protest a lack of climate awareness, Thursday 17 January 2019 in Brussels. This is the second action, after last week's protest. BELGA PHOTO NICOLAS MAETERLINCK (Photo credit should read NICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP/Getty Images)
PORTO, PORTUGAL - JANUARY 12: View of the staircase and premises at closing time in Lello Bookstore on the eve of its 113th anniversary on January 12, 2019 in Porto, Portugal. The bookstore, a favourite of author J.K. Rowling, is considered one of the world’s most impressive bookshops, it's architecture is believed to have inspired Rowling’s depictions of Harry Potter’s Hogwarts. In 2017 it received more than 1.2 million visitors and the bookstore averages some 1300 book sales a day. (Photo by Horacio Villalobos - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
Wreckage of a Boeing 707 military cargo plane which crashed on the west of the Iranian capital, near Fath airport, is seen near Karaj, Iran, January 14, 2019. Abbas Shariati/Tasnim News Agency via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY.
A female panda (unnamed) that was born in a Malaysian zoo has her first birthday at the National Zoo in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Monday, Jan. 14, 2019. She is the second offspring of giant pandas Liang Liang and Xing Xing, both on a 10-year loan to Malaysia since 2014. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
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Democrats, who took over the House this month, have flatly rejected the president's demand for wall money.
Clyburn, at a news conference, said the $5.7 billion that the House could consider would be used to fund more drones, X-rays, sensors and border patrol agents but could not be used to build Trump's wall.
(Reporting by Richard Cowan; Writing by Susan Heavey; Editing by Bill Trott)