Trump asks congressional leaders to return for shutdown talks Friday -lawmaker

Trump asks congressional leaders to return for shutdown talks Friday -lawmaker

Donald Trump and top congressional leaders failed to resolve a partial government shutdown that has stretched well into a second week as the president refused to back off from his demands for billions of dollars for a long-promised wall along the southern USA border with Mexico. Led by presumptive House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, they have scheduled votes on their first day in the majority on legislation that would end the shutdown without providing the wall funding Trump wants. "We're talking about border security". We want to solve that issue.

As of Wednesday, Trump has made it clear he won't accept the Democrats' offer to re-open the government.

"I said 'Mr. President, give me one good reason why you should continue your shutdown", Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer said after the White House meeting.

The shutdown was triggered by Trump's demand that Congress allocate more than $5bn in taxpayer money to build a wall along the 2,000-mile border between the USA and Mexico - a concession Democrats refuse to make. The location meant that the conversation was not televised, unlike the volatile sitdown during which Democratic leaders talked back to Trump last month.

"They are now feeling the heat", Schumer said.

Trump suggested Tuesday that the shutdown would make for a less than ideal start for Pelosi, the likely incoming Speaker of the House.

After Democrats explained their plan to pass measures funding the government - including the Department of Homeland Security - at least temporarily as negotiations continued, Schumer repeatedly asked Trump why he opposed that approach, the person familiar with the exchange said.

In a Cabinet meeting - flanked by an acting defense secretary and an acting interior secretary - he doubled down on his long-standing demand for a "big, lovely wall".

"Could be a long time or could be quickly", Trump said during lengthy comments at a Cabinet meeting at the White House, his first public appearance of the new year.

Trump specifically attacked the Democratic talking point that a wall is "immoral". Or, he can block the bill from going to a vote at all, and share the blame with Trump for the shutdown as, in the other chamber of the Capitol, Pelosi and House Democrats cast themselves as the sole adults who are trying to get the government reopened and back to work.

Making his case ahead of the afternoon session with Democratic and Republican leaders, he said the current border is "like a sieve" and noted the tear gas "flying" overnight to deter arrivals.

President Donald Trump rejected a compromise proposal floated by Vice President Mike Pence to end a partial government shutdown.

"If they knew they couldn't come through, they wouldn't even start", Trump said at the meeting, joined by Cabinet secretaries and top advisers, including Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump.

During the campaign, he promised a "great, great" wall made of reinforced concrete that would rise 30 feet or more and extend so far underground that it would be impossible to tunnel underneath.

The President and Democrats are at odds over funding for a border wall.

"We are giving the Republicans the opportunity to take yes for an answer", she wrote in a letter to colleagues.

The partial government shutdown began on December 22. "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".

It would also include another measure to fund the departments of Agriculture, Interior, Housing and Urban Development and others closed by the partial shutdown.

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