Trump not ‘happy’ with Congress’ deal to prevent shutdown

President Trump said Tuesday he was not “happy” or “thrilled” with the border security deal hammered out by Congressional negotiators — but added that he didn’t think there would be another government shutdown.

“I don’t think you’re going to see a shutdown. If you did have it it’s the Democrats’ fault. I would hope that there won’t be a shutdown,” he told reporters during a Cabinet meeting at the White House.

Still, he trashed the compromise hammered out by Democratic and Republican Congressional negotiators.

“I can’t say I’m happy. I can’t say I’m thrilled. It’s not doing the trick,” he said.

Asked whether he was still considering declaring a national emergency, he replied: “I’m considering everything.”

And he asserted that he would build the wall one way or another while also insisting that construction was already underway.

And he introduced a theory that walls had gotten a bad name because those erected during his predecessors’ administrations were so ugly.

“It was crazy what they were putting up. I happen to think the walls they were building were so unattractive and so ugly that walls got bad names, OK, if that means anything,” the president said.

“They were so ugly with rusted steel and big ugly plates on top,” he continued.

Trump then said he grilled an individual about why the walls were so rusted, and that the person replied that they were left unpainted because past authorities wanted to do the job on the cheap.

“I said, ‘Why don’t you paint the steel?’ [and the person replied] ‘Sir, we’re saving [money] but it’s going to rust.’ I’ve never in my whole life seen steel that was unpainted. This could only happen at the border. It wasn’t me, it was our past geniuses,” Trump said.

He also again said he was “proud” of the record-breaking, 35-day partial government shutdown that began in December. because it gave him the chance to highlight what he has called a “crisis” at the border with Mexico.

“I accepted the first one and I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished because people learned during that shutdown all about the problems coming in from the Southern border,” he said.

Negotiators reached a tentative deal Monday night to provide $1.375 billion to build 55 miles of new border barriers — well below the $5.7 billion Trump had demanded for more than 200 miles of wall.

The deal would avert another partial government shutdown on Friday.

Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell said on the Senate floor that he supported the deal.

“I look forward to reviewing the full text as soon as possible and hope the Senate can act on this legislation in short order,” McConnell said.

Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), one of the chief negotiators, said Trump would come aboard the deal if it gets strong support in Congress.

“I would think if we pass it in the House and the Senate by a good margin, the president will sign it,” Shelby said.

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