Trump Blames Potential Government Shutdown On Democrats

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Pelosi, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer and the top congressional Republicans plan to meet with Trump at the White House on Thursday. We want to have a great, attractive crime-free country, ' Trump said during a cabinet meeting. They want to have illegal immigrants pouring into our country, bringing with them crime, tremendous amounts of crime'.

The infighting came as Republican congressional leaders labored to demonstrate that they can govern and spare the country the chaos of a government shutdown at Christmas time that likely would not sit well with voters.

Lawmakers in the Democratic Party are threatening to let federal spending authority lapse if Trump denies illegal immigrants who came to the country as children safe haven.

A partial government shutdown would leave "essential" services operating, but could disrupt programs ranging from the operation of national parks to educational programs and scientific research.

His comments drew a tweet from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., who called Trump "the only person talking about a government shutdown".

The GOP will need Democratic votes to push the spending bills through Congress, another reason the pathway is unclear for averting a closure just weeks before the start of the 2018 election year.

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They want GOP leaders to take a firmer stance in negotiations with Democrats - including opposing efforts to link an increase in defense spending, supported by most Republicans, to an increase in nondefense spending, favored by Democrats.

While Trump's tweet was meant to antagonize, Schumer and Pelosi were condemned for their last minute decision by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

The Republican president wants to switch the U.S.to a merit-based immigration system to cut down on "chain migration" practices that allow extended family members of legal residents to apply for and receive visas. Trump ended safeguards against deportation three months ago but has expressed an openness to restoring them.

Late on Wednesday, a bill advanced in the House of Representatives to extend current federal funding through December 22, with the chamber expected to take up the bill on Thursday.

"We hope the president will go into this meeting with an open mind, rather than deciding that an agreement can't be reached beforehand", the Democrats said Monday in a written statement.

"We've got to get across the finish line on tax reform", Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., leader of the House Freedom Caucus, told reporters after the group met privately early Wednesday.

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Meadows and fellow Freedom Caucus leader Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) said they are seeking to make it as hard as possible for Democrats to oppose spending bills that hike spending on the military but not on other domestic programs.

Asked if a shutdown would be a distraction, he said, "Of course".

But Republicans have said they will not include a fix for DACA in the spending bill, arguing the issue should be handled separately.

The Senate approved its near $1.5 trillion tax legislation before dawn Saturday, while the House passed a similar measure in November.

Knowing that, Democrats are using their leverage to try forcing concessions to boost domestic spending in areas like health care and infrastructure. Check back for more updates. That widely popular program helps provide medical care to more than 8 million children.

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