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North Korea's Latest Missile Launch Could Have Hit the White House

03 December 2017
North Korea's Latest Missile Launch Could Have Hit the White House

President Donald Trump on Tuesday said top Democratic lawmakers who skipped a meeting at the White House after he blasted them on Twitter are "all talk, no action".

But the New York Democrat and the White House have been locked in a war of words about a potential deal after the president said on Twitter that he was meeting with "Chuck and Nancy" on keeping the government open but "I don't see a deal". Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan also reprimanded their Democratic colleagues for not showing up, though it was possible to nearly miss their presence, sitting at far ends of the table.

Rep. Tom Cole, an Oklahoma Republican on the House Appropriations Committee, said it would be hard for Democrats to blame Republicans for a shutdown if they were the ones who walked away from talks with the president.

Ellis SchumerGOP should reject the left's pessimism and the deficit trigger Fallon: Trump's empty seats photo probably reminded him of his inauguration Congress should represent Americans - not illegal aliens MORE (D-N.Y.) said negotiators were making progress in talks to prevent a government shutdown before President Trump weighed in on Tuesday morning. "I don't see a deal!" he said. "Now it's not even talk", Trump said, speaking from the Roosevelt Room, where he sat between to empty chairs with placards for Pelosi and Schumer. The last time Schumer, Pelosi, Ryan and McConnell huddled at the White House, Trump's bipartisan outreach benefited Democrats, earning them a short-term extension on government spending and setting up this latest funding deal showdown.

He told reporters that he would blame Democrats if the government shut down if they failed to reach an agreement. Trump unfurled an array of criticisms about the Democratic leaders, calling them weak on crime, illegal immigration, and military spending-topics that play well to his base and have little to do with the federal budget or tax reform bill that Republicans are trying to pass.

So what do Schumer and Pelosi have to lose by going to the mat against President Trump on this issue? Press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said, "The President's invitation to the Democrat leaders still stands, and he encourages them to put aside their pettiness, stop the political grandstanding, show up and get to work".

Mitch McConnell on Capitol Hill on Tuesday.

Congress has three choices: approve a massive bill for more than $1 trillion to keep the government operating through September 30, 2018; pass a shorter extension of current funding to buy more time; or fail to pass anything and risk a partial government shutdown.

The other reason why this is a bad move for the Democrats is that there's no lock on who will take the blame if a shutdown occurs.

While it was unlikely the missile fired in the early hours of Wednesday could yet carry a nuclear payload, the missile itself probably had the capability of reaching the United States capital, or anywhere else in the country, said David Wright, co-director of the global security programme at the Union of Concerned Scientists. I got elected partially because of the border wall.

He and the Democrats made a deal to increase the debt limit and finance the government through early December.

As McConnell prepared to leave for the meeting at the White House, he said Pelosi and Schumer's protest demonstrated a "lack of seriousness". We're going to learn very soon.

The acrimonious back-and-forth between Mr. Trump and the Democratic leaders began, as has become customary, with a presidential tweet.