Only days before a possible shutdown of the government, which is facing the threat of running out of money, President Donald Trump accused Democrats of trying to raise taxes and “flood” the country with illegal immigrants.
Trump delivered his attack of Representative Nancy Pelosi and Senator Chuck Schumer on Twitter, which they responded to by canceling the meeting scheduled to take place in the White House. The meeting was intended to address the issues which threaten lawmakers ahead of the December 8 deadline.
“Given that the president doesn’t see a deal between Democrats and the White House, we believe the best path forward is to continue negotiating with our Republican counterparts in Congress instead,” the two said in a statement.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders pointed out that Trump wanted the two Democrats to “put aside their pettiness, show up and get to work.” Trump also called the Democratic leaders “weak on crime” and on the military.
“They’ve been all talk, and they’ve been no action, and now it’s even worse,” said Trump, who added that “now it’s not even talk.”
This signifies an unpromising start to already difficult upcoming negotiations in which Democrats have the leverage as Republicans depend on their votes to pass a spending measure. Pelosi and Schumer are hopeful the negotiations could be used to help Dreamers, but the fierce criticism the president directed toward them didn’t help secure the necessary Democratic support. Regarding the possible shutdown in case needed votes are not secured, Trump again said Democrats would be to blame.
“If that happens, I would absolutely blame the Democrats. If it happens, it’s going to be over illegals pouring into the country, crime pouring into the country, no border wall – which everybody wants,” said the president.
Pelosi immediately reacted to the attack, saying that Trump “now knows that his verbal abuse will no longer be tolerated,” adding that “he’s more interested in stunts than in addressing the needs of the American people.”
Earlier this year, Trump suggested that maybe “our country needs a good shutdown, even though his aides maintained he was not implying that a deal won’t be struck. It is unclear whether Trump is open to accepting Democrat’s demands on immigration as he has shown some willingness to do so, while at the same time insisting on the need for a border wall and a harder stance toward immigrants.