Pelosi says Democrats will give "nothing for the wall"

Posted January 03, 2019

During a Cabinet meeting at the White House Wednesday, the president said the partial government shutdown will carry on "as long as it takes" until Democrats agree to the $5.6 billion he wants to fund a wall along the U.S. -Mexico border.

Senior Department of Homeland Security officials will brief the congressional leaders, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said, on the last day of the Republican-controlled 2017-2018 Congress. The US-Mexico border is roughly 3220km long. We want to solve that issue.

"We are asking the president to open up the government", the California Democrat said. She's persevered. You gotta give her credit - no matter what you think of her - you have to give her credit because - think about it - think about all those presidents she's endured, right?

The top Democrats and Republicans in the House and Senate emerged from the White House talks giving no indication they've changed their positions on Trump's demand for $5 billion to fund a border wall.

"No, no. Nothing for the wall", Pelosi replied.

"If he doesn't build the wall, the next president will be a Democrat", she added at the end of the interview.

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Trump has demanded at least $5 billion in funding directed at creating the first stages of a new wall between the USA and Mexico that he repeatedly promised to voters during his campaign and over the first two years of his presidency, and which he said before his election that he would force Mexico to pay for. Democrats have offered $1.3 and $1.6 billion at various times for improving border security, but prohibiting any be spent on Trump's wall.

Adding to the uncertainty in Washington, an incoming senator, former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, lashed out at Trump on Tuesday in an opinion piece in The Washington Post.

Amid the stalemate over the wall, Trump shelved his annual Christmas vacation in Florida, choosing to remain in Washington and fire off a stream of angry, and often misleading tweets.

After the meeting, Schumer told reporters that he asked Trump directly for a reason.

"Our first order of business will be to end the reckless Trump shutdown and reopen the government", Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of NY, the incoming caucus chairman, said in an interview.

"The partisanship, rancor and dysfunction of the Trump shutdown is exactly what voters rebuked in November", said Rep. -elect Joe Neguse of Colorado, a new leader of the freshmen class, in the Democrats' weekly address.

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The Wednesday afternoon briefing with the congressional leaders is taking place the day before Democrats are to assume control of the House and end the Republican monopoly on government.

The location means the conversation will not be televised, unlike the volatile sit-down during which Democratic leaders talked back to Mr Trump last month.

Trump's statement on crossings contradicts the Department of Homeland Security.

At three different points, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer asked Trump why he won't support reopening the other areas of the government that don't have to do with the immigration dispute, according to a source familiar with the meeting.

Even if only symbolic, the passage of the bills in the House would put fresh pressure on the president.

But first, they'll have to get government reopened from the partial shutdown. It would provide money through the remainder of the fiscal year, to September 30. But it's uncertain how Trump would respond, and McConnell's current stance is that he will not send the president any legislation he will not sign.

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At least one Republican, South Carolina Sen. Graham said Trump was "open-minded" about his proposal.