Trump to Meet Congressional Leaders as Shutdown Stretches On


WASHINGTON — President Trump plans to host congressional leaders on Wednesday within the White House Situation Room for a border safety briefing that would both be the newest skirmish over his wall or the beginnings of a decision to a authorities shutdown that’s stretching into its 12th day.

The three p.m. gathering might be within the safe room within the White House basement the place army operations are tracked and different delicate discussions unfold, a acutely aware effort to infuse a way of national-security disaster into the immigration dialogue. It might be Mr. Trump’s first face-to-face assembly with Democratic leaders since a combative session final month when he stated he would insist that any authorities spending invoice embrace cash for a wall on the southwestern border — and would proudly personal the results if that meant a shutdown.

Democrats have refused to allocate any cash — not to mention the $5 billion that Mr. Trump has demanded — for a big, bodily barrier just like the wall desired by the president to thwart unlawful border crossings. Instead, Democrats, in full management of the House, will vote Thursday on two payments to fund many of the authorities via Sept. 30 and the Department of Homeland Security to Feb. eight.

They would dedicate $1.three billion for border safety measures, such as enhanced surveillance and fortified fencing.

“We are giving the Republicans the opportunity to take yes for an answer,” Ms. Pelosi, who will assume the speakership on Thursday, wrote in a letter to House Democrats on Tuesday evening. “Senate Republicans have already supported this legislation, and if they reject it now, they will be fully complicit in chaos and destruction of the president’s third shutdown of his term.”

But Mr. Trump has known as the Homeland Security funding proposal — which the Senate handed unanimously final month — unacceptable, saying that it exhibits that Democrats, as he tweeted on Tuesday, “do not care about Open Borders.”

Senior Democratic aides said they had low expectations for the session, which they predicted would be a stunt manufactured for dramatic optics with a one-sided presentation from the White House, that would not yield progress toward a resolution of the impasse.

“It’s not often the president gets to hear people tell him when he’s wrong,” said Justin Goodman, a spokesman for Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the minority leader. “Democrats intend to do that today.”

On Wednesday, Mr. Trump repeated his false claims about the border wall, including that Mexico was already paying for it, as he promised during his campaign, and that much of its construction had already been completed.

The president has puzzled lawmakers and his own aides with his contention that Mexico is financing the wall through the revised Nafta trade pact between Mexico, Canada and the United States, known as the USMCA. The agreement contains no such proviso, and it is designed to lower tariffs, not raise them.

And while Mr. Trump claims that the wall is already being built, the Republican-controlled Congress enacted legislation barring any money from being spent to do so, and no such construction has occurred. The Trump administration has spent less than 10 percent of the other border security funding, for fencing and other measures, that Congress provided over the last year.



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