Top Democrats Interested In Bipartisan Meeting Without Trump

Jeannette Daniel
December 3, 2017

The White House responded by canceling its daily press briefing at the last minute and having President Trump address pool reporters with some vaguely reassuring promises to "handle" Pyongyang's nuclear threat before bitching about Democratic leadership.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, said that in his decades of service under administrations of both parties, he had never refused an offer to meet the president.

Democratic leaders ignited a new shutdown showdown in Washington on Tuesday after they refused to show for what was supposed to be a bipartisan meeting with President Trump, trying to cut him out of negotiations as Congress faces a long to-do list before year's end.

"Rather than going to the White House for a show meeting that won't result in an agreement", Pelosi and Schumer said in a joint statement, "we've asked Leader McConnell and Speaker Ryan to meet this afternoon".

Rep. Tom Cole, an Oklahoma Republican on the House Appropriations Committee, said it would be hard for Democrats to blame Republicans for a shutdown if they were the ones who walked away from talks with the president.

Mr. Trump, though, said he won't hesitate to blame Democrats for a shutdown.

Pelosi and Schumer will try to meet with Senate Majority Leader Mitch Mc Connell and House Speaker Paul Ryan in the afternoon they said
Top Democrats pull out of White House meeting after Trump tweet

"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", Schumer and Pelosi replied in a statement.

"I think we should avoid a shutdown at all cost", said Senator Richard C. Shelby, Republican of Alabama and a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Schumer said: "With his tweet this morning, the president made sure that the meeting is nothing but a photo-op".

All the more remarkable was the change in tone from just a few months ago.

"Chuck & Nancy" of course are Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. But on Tuesday, the alliance with "Chuck and Nancy" was no more. But to do so, party leaders need to come to a deal to lift strict caps on spending that were imposed in 2011.

The White House said on Wednesday that it does not expect the government to shut down next month, but has contingency plans in place if Congress fails to reach a deal on funding the government by a December 8 deadline. "So they're not showing up for the meeting". Now in control of all three levers, Republicans would suffer even more from a shutdown, Democrats said. But they can't solve them if they're not talking to each other. And math alone says that could lead to a shutdown, since Republicans don't have enough votes to pass a spending bill on their own. And Democrats want to reach a deal regarding that program, called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, as part of the year-end negotiations. Unless Congress provides more money, states will have to freeze enrollment or start shutting down the program, which serves more than eight million children.

No one show Donald Trump these Christmas ceremony crowd-size photos
Trump has vowed to put "Christmas" back at the centre of the holidays. New this year are wreaths hanging from the exterior of every window.

Other reports by My Hot News

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