President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he would be "proud" to oversee a government shutdown if Congress fails to authorize funding for a wall along the southern border.
Trump and Vice President Mike Pence met with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) in the Oval Office where the four sparred over who would take the blame if lawmakers fail to reach a compromise to keep the government open by December 21.
Pelosi told Trump that "the American people recognize that we must keep the government open... that a shutdown is not worth anything and that we should not have a Trump shutdown." Pelosi said, "there are no votes in the House... a majority of votes... for a wall."
Trump replied: "If I needed the votes in the House for a wall I would have them in one session."
Schumer pushed back against Trump's history of shutdown threats but was quickly interrupted by the president.
“If we don’t get what we want, one way or the other through you or the military or anybody else, yes I will shut down the government. I am proud to shut down the government for border security.”
Watch the contentious discussion below:
Nevertheless, Pelosi persisted. And it was greatly appreciated.
Pelosi, set to become Speaker of the House for a second time come January, is fully prepared to keep Trump in line.
Pelosi also challenged Trump to get funding for a wall while Republicans still have majorities in the House and Senate. Trump said he needs 10 Democratic Senators and therefore does not have the votes.
Trump's body language was almost mocking of Pelosi.
“I don’t think we should have a debate in front of the press on this,” Pelosi told the president, adding that she and Schumer came to the meeting “in good faith" and that Trump "turned it into this kind of discussion in the public view.”
“The fact is, we did get him to say, to fully own, that the shutdown was his,” Pelosi said in the meeting. “That was an accomplishment.”
Schumer urged Trump to not shut the government and that Democrats "have a proposal" that has bipartisan support.
"We're gonna get the wall built," Trump insisted.
Following the meeting, Pelosi took a swipe at Trump's ego.
“It’s like a manhood thing with him — as if manhood can be associated with him,” she said.
“I didn’t wanna say ‘you don’t know what you’re talking about’ while in the room,” Pelosi quipped as she left the White House.
One aide told Josh Dawsey of The Washington Post that Pelosi compared Trump to a skunk.
"The press is all there! Chuck is really shouting out," Pelosi was heard saying. "I was trying to be the mom. I can’t explain it to you. It was so wild. It goes to show you: 'you get into a tickle contest with a skunk, you get tinkle all over you.'"