President Donald Trump has walked out of a meeting with congressional leaders as talks to end the partial government shutdown remain at an impasse, leading Democrats and the president himself have said.
Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said Mr Trump asked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi at Wednesday’s White House meeting whether she would agree to fund his wall on the southern border with Mexico.
Just left a meeting with Chuck and Nancy, a total waste of time. I asked what is going to happen in 30 days if I quickly open things up, are you going to approve Border Security which includes a Wall or Steel Barrier? Nancy said, NO. I said bye-bye, nothing else works!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 9, 2019
When she said “no”, Mr Schumer said, Mr Trump got up and said, “Then we have nothing to discuss.”
Mr Schumer added: “And he just walked out”, the Democrat branding the president’s actions “really, really unfortunate”.
Mr Trump called the meeting “a total waste of time”.
He tweeted that once Ms Pelosi rejected his border wall, he “said bye-bye, nothing else works!”
We face a humanitarian and security crisis at our Southern Border. The President will stand firm for border security. That includes, additional law enforcement personnel, immigration judges, a physical barrier, counter-narcotics tech, and resources to address humanitarian needs.— The White House (@WhiteHouse) January 9, 2019
Vice President Mike Pence said Democrats were “unwilling to even negotiate” an end to the partial government shutdown and the standoff over the wall.
Mr Pence spoke outside the West Wing after the contentious meeting, saying: “I think the president made his position very clear today that there will be no deal without a wall.”
Mr Pence said Mr Trump asked Ms Pelosi whether she would be willing to agree to funding for a wall or a barrier on the southern border if he re-opened the government quickly.
Mr Pence said: “When she said ‘no’, the president said ‘goodbye’.”
Mr Schumer said Mr Trump had a “temper tantrum.”
Mr Pence said of the president: “I don’t recall him ever raising his voice.”