US President Donald Trump on Thursday (September 14) said a deal allowing undocumented immigrants — so-called dreamers — to stay is “fairly close.”
Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer and House of Representatives Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi had earlier said they had come to an agreement with Trump at a dinner meeting at the White House Wednesday (September 13) evening, however Trump denied this.
“No deal was made last night on DACA. Massive border security would have to be agreed to in exchange for consent. Would be subject to vote,” Trump wrote in one of a series of posts on Twitter.
He was referring to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programme created by former President Barack Obama.
“The Wall (on the US-Mexico border), which is already under construction in the form of new renovation of old and existing fences and walls, will continue to be built,” Trump also wrote.
Trump’s diehard supporters are fuming after an apparent about-face on ‘dreamers.’ My latest >> https://t.co/vhUj59TiT7— Robert Costa (@costareports) September 14, 2017
While White House officials have suggested legislation on DACA could move forward without wall funding, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders disputed the characterization that a deal had been reached to leave it out of any legislation focused on the Dreamers.
“While DACA and border security were both discussed, excluding the wall was certainly not agreed to,” she said on Twitter.
Throughout his 2016 campaign for president and since taking office in January, Trump has demanded the construction of a wall to keep out illegal immigrants and drugs. He initially said Mexico would pay for the wall but has requested money from the U.S. Congress after the government of Mexico refused to pay.
The dinner was the latest effort in a new initiative by Trump to work with opposition party Democrats on major legislation.
Following the dinner, a White House official said the president, Schumer and Pelosi discussed tax reform, immigration, border security, infrastructure investments and trade as part of Trump’s bid to reach out to Democrats.