Democrats move toward shutdown showdown by refusing to meet with Trump

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The two Dems added that a White House visit would just amount to a "show meeting" and instead invited their Republican counterparts, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan, to discuss the year-end agenda Tuesday afternoon.

Flanked by empty chairs with name cards for House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Trump said he was "not really that surprised" the Democratic leaders decided not to attend a scheduled meeting at the White House.

Two committee Republicans had said they were considering voting against the measure, but were reportedly persuaded after meeting Trump, who is said to want the bill on his desk before year's end.

And he continues to bash political opponents like Democratic congressional leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi as tax-hiking pushovers who are unwilling to bolster law enforcement, the military or the nation's borders.

But other Republicans see a severe risk in a government shutdown when they control both chambers of Congress and the White House.

Meeting with "Chuck and Nancy" today about keeping government open and working. Trump tweeted on Tuesday morning that he doesn't "see a deal" happening with "Chuck and Nancy" due to their stances on immigration and taxes.

Despite Schumer and Pelosi's absence, Trump seemed optimistic that the GOP's disaster of a tax reform bill will pass the Senate vote later this week. "We have a lot of differences", Trump said of Schumer and Pelosi. "There is a meeting at the White House this afternoon, and if Democrats want to reach an agreement, they will be there".

Pelosi responded to Trump's comments on Twitter, saying that his "verbal abuse will no longer be tolerated".

Andy Kiersz  Business Insider
Andy Kiersz Business Insider

But Democrats' support for any modifications to the legislation would be conditioned on legislative protections for immigrants known as "Dreamers"(those who were brought to the United States illegally when still children and who have stayed since) while some conservative Republicans have objections.

"Problem is they want illegal immigrants flooding into our Country unchecked, are weak on Crime and want to substantially RAISE Taxes", he wrote.

"If that happens, we will absolutely blame the Democrats", Trump said of a shutdown.

Congress has three choices: approve a massive bill for more than $1 trillion to keep the government operating through September 30, 2018; pass a shorter extension of current funding to buy more time; or fail to pass anything and risk a partial government shutdown. If it happens, it's going to be over illegals coming into the country, crime pouring into the country, no border wall, which everyone wants-I got elected partially because of the border wall.

How this increases the potential for a shutdown: Trump's sticking on issues important to his base makes him less likely to compromise with Democrats, who want to advance polar opposite issues important to their base.

"We have a very serious approach".

President Trump speaks at a meeting on November 27, 2017.