Following the disastrous meeting at the White House between Donald Trump and Congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle, Mike Pence claimed nothing has changed on his side of the bargaining table, and denied that Trump had a temper tantrum and stormed from the meeting.
“There will be no deal without a wall,” Pence said — parroting Trump’s position. “There will be no deal without the priorities the president has put on the table.”
Pence went on to deny Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer‘s account of the meeting, that Trump threw a “temper tantrum” and stormed out.
“The president walked into the room, passed out candy! It’s true!” Pence said. “I don’t recall him ever raising his voice or slamming his hand.”
Pence added, “And he left the room today because Speaker Nancy Pelosi said even if he gave her what she wanted she would never agree to the border security priorities that we have on the table. That was unacceptable.”
Then Pence went off on Democratic leaders.
“When the Speaker of the House comes to the table with the leader of the Democrats in the Senate, after we’ve made days of good faith negotiations, with an offer on the table, and their only answer is, ‘We will not negotiate until we reopen the government’…And when the president says, ‘Well, if I gave you exactly what you are asking for, would you agree to border security and a wall? And they say ‘No,’ I think the American people deserve better,” he said.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy also disputed accounts that Trump lashed out.
“The president turned to Nancy — and it was all very calm — and he asked her, ‘OK, if I open up the government, in 30 days could we have border security?’ And she said, ‘No, not at all.’”
Pressed on Trump’s precise request, McCarthy said, “He may have said ‘border wall.'”
“He didn’t slam his hands down, he just said, ‘Alright, I guess you guys don’t want to do anything.’”
McCarthy, who was also asked about the candy, reported it was “Butterfingers and a couple of other types. It was a mix.”
Pence: “The president walked into the room and passed out candy. It’s true.”
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) January 9, 2019