Poor President Donald Trump! House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi just mocked his desire for border-wall funding hours after a tempestuous Oval Office meeting. Pelosi called it a “manhood thing” for him.
“It’s like a manhood thing for him. As if manhood could ever be associated with him. This wall thing,” the California Democrat told members of the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee in a closed-door meeting after returning to the Capitol.
Democratic leaders were quick to seize on in a press conference relished in the fact that Trump said he would “proudly” take ownership for a government shutdown.
“But the fact is we did get him to say, to fully own that the shutdown was his,” Pelosi said, according to two sources inside the room. “That was an accomplishment.”
The dramatic showdown between Trump and the Democratic leaders came as leaders on Capitol Hill are trying to avert a partial government shutdown on Dec. 21. Democratic leaders have agreed to include $1.6 billion for border security in the funding bill, but Trump is demanding that the bill include $5 billion to construct a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.
That’s a non-starter for Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer(D-N.Y.) and most other congressional Democrats.
The president unexpectedly called in camera crews and reporters just before the negotiations, which quickly devolved into a heated shouting match between Trump and Democratic leaders, who traded barbs. The confrontation ended with no clear resolution in sight.
Vice President Pence was also in the room during the meeting, but largely stayed silent on the sidelines.
“It was so wild,” Pelosi described the meeting to her colleagues, according to sources inside the room. “It goes to show you: You get into a tinkle contest with a skunk, you get tinkle all over you.”
Pelosi, who appeared to be riding high after her Oval Office showdown with Trump, is still trying to lock down the votes needed to clinch the Speaker’s gavel and has been under immense pressure from her left flank not to cave on the wall.
During the meeting, Pelosi and Schumer offered to pass a continuing resolution that would extend current funding levels, which include $1.3 billion for border fencing and barriers.
Trump did not appear receptive to the idea, however, as he repeatedly insisted on securing more money for the wall and threatened to shut down the government if he doesn’t get it.
“I am proud to shut down the government for border security,” Trump said during the meeting.
“I will take the mantle,” the president added. “I will be the one to shut it down, I’m not going to blame you for it.”