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Trump walks out of border security meeting after Pelosi rejects wall pitch
By: Alex Pappas, FOX, January 9, 2018:
Trump leaves Capitol Hill after policy lunch, says there is solidarity within the Republican Party for border security
President Trump says a border wall is needed to stop human and drug trafficking.
President Trump walked out of a White House meeting with congressional leaders Wednesday afternoon over the partial government shutdown after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi again rejected supporting new funding for a border wall, according to those in the meeting.
Speaking to reporters after the brief session, New York Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer, the Senate minority leader, said the “president just got up and walked out.”
The president, in a tweet, called the meeting “a total waste of time” and appeared to confirm that he left after Pelosi’s answer.
“I asked what is going to happen in 30 days if I quickly open things up, are you going to approve Border Security which includes a Wall or Steel Barrier? Nancy said, NO. I said bye-bye, nothing else works!” Trump tweeted.
The meeting in the Situation Room Wednesday afternoon came ahead of Trump’s planned trip to the southern Texas border on Thursday. Earlier, the president traveled to Capitol Hill to meet with Senate Republicans, saying afterward, “We have a very unified party.”
Still, a growing number of Republicans appear uncomfortable with the toll the partial shutdown is taking.
Trump has said he might declare a national emergency and try to authorize the wall on his own if Congress won’t approve the $5.7 billion he’s asking.
“I think we might work a deal, and if we don’t I might go that route,” he said.
Past meetings with Democrats have resulted in both sides digging in, with Trump insisting on nearly $6 billion for a border wall and Democrats saying they won’t entertain the discussion until Congress passes and Trump signs a package re-opening shuttered federal agencies.
Trump presents a united front with GOP after leaving a meeting on Capitol Hill with Senate RepublicansVideo
The president’s primetime address on Tuesday night saw both camps drifting even further apart, with Trump declaring a “humanitarian and security crisis” and vowing to protect America, “so help me God” – and Democratic congressional leaders saying Trump is working to “manufacture a crisis, stoke fear and divert attention from the turmoil in his administration.”
How the two sides will bridge this difference – and how long they will resist a compromise – remains unclear. The mounting impact of the partial shutdown, which initially was limited but will increase as more federal workers miss paychecks this cycle and services like those at national parks suffer, is likely to increase pressure on Congress and the White House to forge a deal in the coming days.
Yet Trump told congressional leaders the standoff could last months, even years, as he demands Washington take action to stem the flow of illegal immigrants, drugs and criminals crossing the border.
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