President Trump on Tuesday angrily threatened a government shutdown if Congress doesn’t fund his long-promised border wall during a heated White House sit-down with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer.
“I am proud to shut down the government for border security, Chuck. The people of this country don’t want criminals and people that have lots of problems pouring into our country,” the president told the Senate minority leader during a remarkable, tense exchange as the cameras rolled.
“I will take the mantle. I will be the one to shut it down. I’m not going to blame you. I’m going to shut it down for border security,” Trump said.
Schumer had prodded the president by noting that Trump had repeatedly threatened to shut down the government in the past.
“Twenty times you called for it, [saying,] ‘I will shut down the government if I don’t get my wall.’ You said it. You said it,” he said.
Both Schumer and Pelosi, the House minority leader, repeatedly told Trump they wanted a deal that could pass both the House and the Senate, and that they should all agree to not shut the government down.
“We believe you shouldn’t shut it down,” Schumer said.
Pelosi at several points urged that the discussion continue without the press present.
“We’re here to have a conversation. I don’t think we should have a debate in front of the press,” Pelosi said.
Later, she told reporters she thought the conversation should continue behind closed doors because “I didn’t want to in front of those people say, ‘You don’t know what you are talking about.’”
Schumer, who later described the president’s performance as a “temper tantrum,” also chided Trump for his repeated claims that the wall was already being built, when in fact there have only been repairs to existing sections.
Vice President Mike Pence was also in the room but appeared to say nothing during the time the press was present.
Source: Read Full Article