Trump to Pelosi: 'We Will Not Cave,' As Democrats Leave Town for the Weekend

By Susan Jones | January 24, 2019 | 11:51am EST
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tells a news conference on Friday it's her way or the highway when it comes to border security and reopening the government. (Photo: Screen capture)

( - President Donald Trump watched House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's news conference on Thursday morning, and even before she finished, he tweeted:

"Nancy just said she 'just doesn’t understand why?' Very simply, without a Wall it all doesn’t work. Our Country has a chance to greatly reduce Crime, Human Trafficking, Gangs and Drugs. Should have been done for decades. We will not Cave!"

At her news conference, Pelosi doubled down on her refusal to negotiate a border security deal, saying talks will happen only when Republicans agree to open the government for two weeks, which they so far have refused to do.

"We have asked them over and over again to take yes for an answer," she said. "We are firm in our support for how we secure our borders. Let's have that discussion after we open up government and let us get to work."

Asked why she doesn't hold another face-to-face meeting with Trump, Pelosi replied that the last such meeting a week ago was a "photo op" for Trump. "But they know full well that we are here, in order to have any conversations."


But many Democrats are not "here." They are going home today for the weekend. Pelosi said some Democrats will stay in Washington, but others will be "commiserating" with furloughed federal workers in their home districts.

Pelosi expressed the hope that Democrats will soon finish writing a $49-billion Homeland Security appropriations bill. "And out of that you will see our commitment to border security," she said.

Pelosi urged Senate Republicans to "care enough" about unpaid federal workers to give in to Democrat demands. She wants them to pass a bill opening the government through February 8, and then negotiate an "evidence based, cost-effective, value-respecting way to protect the American people with border security. That doesn't seem like a big ask," she said.

The Senate is taking up one such amendment this afternoon. Senators also will vote on a second amendment -- Trump's proposal to fund government, including $5.7 billion for wall construction, while extending legal status for DACA enrollees and people with Temporary Protected Status.

Neither amendment is expected to get the 60 votes needed to pass, which leaves the impasse exactly where it was when this week began -- no end to the government shutdown; no money for Trump's border wall; and no sign that either side is willing to "cave," as Trump put it.


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