Schumer and Pelosi Take a Stand After Trump's Latest Twitter Assault
House and Senate Democratic leaders on Tuesday abruptly withdrew from a scheduled White House meeting about averting a government shutdown after President Donald Trump publicly slammed them and cast doubt on the negotiations.
Trump tweeted early Tuesday that House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) "want illegal immigrants flooding into our Country unchecked, are weak on Crime and want to substantially RAISE Taxes," adding, "I don’t see a deal!"
Pelosi and Schumer responded by canceling their plans to meet with Trump and GOP leaders to discuss a deal to keep the government open, raising the prospects of a shutdown as government funding expires next week.
"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," Pelosi and Schumer said in a joint statement.
"If the President, who already said earlier this year that ‘our country needs a good shutdown,’ isn’t interested in addressing the difficult year end agenda, we’ll work with those Republicans who are, as we did in April," the Democratic leaders continued. "We look forward to continuing to work in good faith, as we have been for the last month, with our Republican colleagues in Congress to do just that.”
Schumer and Pelosi said they asked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) to meet Tuesday afternoon instead, a request the GOP leaders rebuffed.
"Democrats are putting government operations, particularly resources for our men and women on the battlefield, at great risk by pulling these antics," McConnell and Ryan said in a statement. "There is a meeting at the White House this afternoon, and if Democrats want to reach an agreement, they will be there."
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders also said the meeting will proceed regardless.
“The President’s invitation to the Democrat leaders still stands and he encourages them to put aside their pettiness, stop the political grandstanding, show up and get to work,” she said in a statement.