House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi countered in a tweet: "President Trump is the only person talking about a government shutdown". Chuck Schumer, Senate minority leader, and Nancy Pelosi, House minority leader, are calculating that voters' wrath would rain down on Republicans if the government lights go out. Without support from many of them, Republicans would need votes from Democrats to push the temporary spending measure through the House, and Democrats have not said what they will do.
Trump claimed the minority party wants illegal immigrants "pouring into our country" and they'll close the government's doors during the holiday season to keep the borders open. For Trump, the complex, and very public, battle over the shutdown will also be a demonstration of his ability to deliver on a central 2016 campaign promise of adding billions of dollars to the United States military budget.
The hurdle will be not only what Republican leaders in the House can negotiate with their own members, a delicate balance as they seek to ensure nothing disrupts their progress on their tax bill, but also what Republicans can negotiate with Democrats.
On the question of Roy Moore's Senate candidacy, Mr. Trump added that Republicans don't want a "liberal Democrat" elected in the special election in Alabama next week.
The Republican-controlled House is expected to vote on Thursday on a bill that would keep the government open at current spending levels through December 22 while lawmakers negotiate a longer-term solution.
Republicans already are trying to exploit possible differences among Democrats over whether to link support for the stopgap spending bill to the immigration measure.
President Trump tried to emphasize bipartisan unity, appearing with the leaders and Vice President Pence in the Oval Office before they began talks on Thursday afternoon.
The hope of many Democrats is to pass the DREAM Act, legislation that would establish a path to citizenship for such immigrants.
He has also demanded that Congress appropriate funds for his proposed border wall, which he says is a matter of national security.
Pelosi said Democrats were seeking funding for fighting opioid addiction, veterans, the children's health program, community health centers, disaster funding and a solution for young undocumented immigrants to the United States. House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi staked out a hard line on Thursday and insisted that any year-end deal would include help for immigrants brought to the USA illegally as children.
Republicans have demands, too.
- President Donald Trump on Wednesday again raised the possibility of a US government shutdown - blaming Democrats for that possible outcome - one day before he is due to host Republican and Democratic congressional leaders for talks on spending bills.
Meadows says GOP House Speaker Paul Ryan has promised to try passing future legislation funding the military for the year and leaving fights with Democrats over domestic spending for later. Democrats have a history of strongly supporting stopgap funding bills, providing the cushion for victory in the Republican House.
Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said Thursday that the leadership was "receiving an update on our military by Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis". "I'm confident we'll walk out of this with it".