President Donald Trump was skeptical today to be able to agree on a budget with the Democrats that includes the financing of the border wall, a controversial measure that he once again threatened to carry out using his power to do so through the national emergency.
In an interview this with The Wall Street Journal on Sunday, the president evaluated the possibilities that a group of 17 congressmen could reach an agreement before the expiration of the three weeks that have been given margin: “Personally I think it is less than 50 -50, but there are very good people in that game.”
Indeed, hundreds of thousands of federal employees are preparing to return to work this Monday after Trump signed on Friday a decree that provides funds for the next three weeks to the Administration and thus allows its reopening after a partial closure of 35 days, the longest in history.
Asked if he would accept less than $5.7 billion for the border wall in the next round of negotiations, Trump said: “I doubt it”; and added: “I have to do it well”.
Democrats are strongly opposed to the concept of physical wall with Mexico, but have been willing to finance the replacement of fences, dikes and barriers of support, in addition to hiring more immigration judges, border agents and technology.
Trump also made it clear that he was skeptical of any agreement that would change money from the wall for a broader review of issues related to immigration.
“I doubt it,” he said when asked if he would agree to give a solution to the “dreamers,” immigrants who entered the United States illegally as children, in exchange for funds for the border fence.
“That’s a separate issue that needs to be addressed later,” said Trump, who nonetheless offered three years of temporary protection for dreamers last week as part of a broader proposal, but Democrats said they wanted protection. more permanent for these people, including citizens.
In this context, President Trump admitted in the interview to the Journal that he does not rule out another closure of the Administration: “Certainly, an option”.
According to that newspaper, Trump’s comments make it clear that if keeping the government open depends on the issue of immigration, the way forward will be difficult.
Trump has even received comments from some conservative analysts who said he had given in to the Democrats to reopen the government without funds from the wall.
Commentator Ann Coulter, for example, described Trump as a “wimp”. “I heard that he has become very hostile,” the president said in the interview: “Maybe I did not return his phone call or something like that.”
When asked about the form of barrier he would accept at the border with Mexico, Trump said: “I have to analyze it, as long as I can stop the criminals, the gangs, the trafficking of people and drugs, I am open to anything. But the only thing that will work is a very strong form of physical barrier. “