BREAKING: After what Donald Trump initially characterized as a “very productive” meeting with top Democrats at the White House, he was forced to walk back that description.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer met with the president on Friday.
Afterwards, Senator Schumer’s description of the encounter was at odds with the president’s as he related to reporters: “We told the president we needed the government open. He resisted…. In fact, he said he’d keep the government closed for a very long period of time. Months or even years.”
At the White House, the president said, “We’re all on the same path in terms of wanting to get government open.” Pushed by reporters, he responded, “I did say that, absolutely I said that…. I don’t think it will, but I am prepared.”
He stood by his demand for congressional funding of a US-Mexico border wall. Without that funding, he said, he would not sign any budget bill. The standoff continues, as approximately 800,000 federal workers continue without pay – many of them working – since 22 December. Democrats remain adamantly opposed to funding a wall.