Trump: ‘I’m not happy’ with border deal to keep government open

· February 12, 2019  
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President Trump
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President Donald Trump said Tuesday he was not “happy” with the border deal negotiated by bipartisan committees in the House and Senate to fund border security and avert a government shutdown.

“Am I happy at first glance? I just got to see it. The answer is no, I’m not. I’m not happy,” Trump told reporters in the White House just before a Cabinet meeting. But he added that he is “thrilled” with the direction his administration is going, “because we’re supplementing things, and moving things around, and we’re doing things that are fantastic and taking from far less, really from far less important areas.”

Congress must reach a deal to fund the government by Friday, or else a second government shutdown of this year will be triggered. A bipartisan group of lawmakers assigned to committees in the House and the Senate to draft a deal behind closed doors presented their agreement Tuesday. The proposed deal would give Trump far less than the $5.7 billion he requested to build a wall, and it would specifically prohibit the construction of concrete barriers. Instead, the deal would reportedly appropriate $1.375 billion for physical barriers and the construction of 55 miles of fencing, while also reducing the number of overall ICE detention beds from 49,057 to 40,520. Under this deal, the wall would not be built and Congress would limit the ability of immigration enforcement to enforce the law.

President Trump did not say he would reject the deal. He did predict that the government would not shut down and insisted that his administration would finish construction of the wall.

“The bottom line is we’re building a lot of wall,” Trump said.

It is unclear how Trump intends to finish the wall. His comment about “moving things around” seems to echo a Politico report from Monday night that the White House is considering an executive order to shift money from Army Corps of Engineers’ flood projects and disaster relief to fund construction of the wall. Trump also reiterated his right to declare a national emergency to fund the wall, though he did not definitively say whether he would do so.


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Author: Chris Pandolfo

Chris Pandolfo is a staff writer and type-shouter for Conservative Review. He holds a B.A. in politics and economics from Hillsdale College. His interests are conservative political philosophy, the American founding, and progressive rock. Follow him on Twitter for doom-saying and great album recommendations @ChrisCPandolfo.

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