President Trump climbed down from his $5.7 billion demand for a border wall on Thursday as his proposal to reopen the government failed in the U.S. Senate.
The president claimed that he technically ‘won’ the vote that failed in Cabinet Room remarks. It didn’t hit a 60-vote threshold necessary to overcome a filibuster.
Trump now says he would take a ‘pro-rated down payment’ on his border wall.
Vice President Mike Pence delivered the message to lawmakers when he was on Capitol Hill earlier in the afternoon. A deal did not immediately emerge, but White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said that one was under negotiation.
‘Leader Mitch McConnell and Senator Chuck Schumer are meeting now to see whether or not they can work out of the deadlock. As was made clear to Senator Lindsay Graham, the 3 week CR would only work if there is a large down payment on the wall,’ she said.
Responding immediately, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejected the ‘down payment’ on the House floor, saying, ‘That is not a reasonable agreement.’
President Trump also issued a vaguely-worded threat about next steps. He said cryptically, ‘I have other alternatives, if I have to. And I will use those alternatives, if I have to.’
CNN reported that the president was preparing to issue a proclamation declaring a national emergency.
His acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney told DailyMail.com on Saturday that it is the White House’s belief that the president has that power but Trump didn’t want to.
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment from DailyMail.com on whether that was what Trump was planning to do next.
Kellyanne Conway, a senior adviser to the president, denied that Trump had drafted a proclamation, however.
‘The president has always said he has that as an option. He has has not executed on that option, because he would like to work through the legislative process, that’s why his team was up there again for hours today. That’s why he was working the phones just a little while ago. I was in there when he was speaking with senators who had cast a vote.’
She said: ‘The president has made clear from the beginning, he has the absolute right to do that. He has conferred with his legal team as to the absolute legal right to do that, and he has always kept it in reserve,’ she said. ‘But he would like Congress to do its job, and its jobs is to actually help secure the border. This was meant to be legislative as a solution.’
Responding to Pelosi’s rejection of Trump’s latest offer, Conway said, ‘No is not a negotiation. No is not a serious counter offer.’
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Source: Daily Mail