Trump steps up attacks on Pelosi for opposing border wall funds

Trump steps up attacks on Pelosi for opposing border wall funds

Trump steps up attacks on Pelosi for opposing border wall funds

In a "Face the Nation" interview set to air Sunday, Trump told host Margaret Brennan the congresswoman was engaging in "very bad politics" in hopes of scoring "a political point".

"I think Nancy Pelosi is hurting our country very badly by doing what she's doing", Trump said, adding that while he has always gotten along with her, "I don't think I will anymore". She knows that you need a barrier, she knows we need border security. "She knows that we need border security".

Pelosi said she was open to negotiating funding for more ports of entry or additional border security technology. As both sides dig in their heels, whether an agreement will be reached remains unclear.

The Republican president also said there is a "good chance" he will follow through on his previous threats to bypass the US Congress and declare a national emergency to obtain funding for a wall.

White House aides claim that Trump has 115 miles of wall that will either be finished or under construction by the end of 2019.

"She doesn't mind human trafficking or she wouldn't do this", the president told CBS, which released excerpts of the interview late Friday. "And anybody that says you don't, they're just playing games".

The president had strong words for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who has repeatedly said she will not agree to give Trump the $5.7 billion he wants for a wall. The conference committee is trying to agree to compromise legislation between Democrats, Republicans and the White House in order to avoid another government shutdown after February 15. "And this really is an invasion of our country by human traffickers..."

Trump has discussed possibly declaring an emergency and redirecting funds already allocated by Congress for other purposes, possibly at the Defense Department, to his wall.

While some portions of pre-existing barrier on the southern border have undergone renovations, no new wall has been built, as the president claims. Such a step likely would prompt a court challenge from Democrats. A McConnell spokesman declined to discuss the senator's private conversations.

The White House did not immediately return a request for comment on the meeting between McConnell and Trump. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. She added that the 17 House and Senate negotiators working on legislation to fund homeland security for the year should decide components of border security.

Democratic negotiators unveiled a detailed opening position containing no money for additional physical barriers on the border to control the flow of illegal immigrants and drugs.

The president is referring to the carefully allotted $1.6 billion from Congress in the 2018 omnibus bill allowing him to replace or fix existing border structures on the southern border - but not build new structures.

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