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Trump’s proposal to end shutdown still includes $5.7 billion wall

President Trump offered on day 29 of a partial government shutdown what he described as a proposal to end the impasse, but it was one that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had already rejected before his announcement. NewsHour White House Correspondent Yamiche Alcindor talks to Hari Sreenivasan about the latest.

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  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    Joining me now from outside the White House is PBS NewsHour is White House Correspondent Yamiche Alcindor. Yamiche, the president laid out what he says is a reasonable proposal. He didn't do this in consultation with Democrats. It's out there. He's talking about border security. DACA, TPS. How is this likely to be received?

  • YAMICHE ALCINDOR:

    Well, the president is saying that essentially young immigrants and immigrants who are fleeing natural disasters, that they can stay in the United States for an extra three years if he gets what he described as a steel border barrier. Democrats have already rejected that idea and they rejected it before the president even began speaking, which is remarkable. I want to read to you what Nancy Pelosi said — again, before the president even started speaking. She said, "his proposal is a compilation of several previously rejected initiatives." She said they "do not represent a good faith effort to restore certainty to people's lives."

    I also want to tell you that I've been talking and emailing with immigrant activists and they all say the president is basically bargaining with immigrant families. They're saying, look you can keep your children but your grandmother or your mother might not be able to come here. That's a big problem for immigrant activist groups, and also for Democrats who think that the president is basically saying I will give you all these initiatives that I already said I didn't want. And now you can have them if you give me what I want. I don't think that this is going to pass the House because Speaker Nancy Pelosi as I said, does not want to bring that up for a vote.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    So what about the possibility of something like this getting through the Senate? Looks like this was done in some consultation with Mitch McConnell?

  • YAMICHE ALCINDOR:

    Well, it sounds as though Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans are behind this proposal. The president in his comments said that he had already talked to Mitch McConnell and that he had pledged to bring this to a vote in the Senate. That's remarkable in that the president has been in close contact with Senate Republicans. Vice President Pence was actually in the Capitol and talking to Republicans last week as the shutdown continued and stretched on.

    But the big problem here is still that Democrats are critical here — before the Republicans controlled all parts of the government, now president has to deal with the Democrat controlled House and that's where this is going to be stopped. And again, immigrants and immigrant activist groups and Democrats are saying that the president is basically just saying here's an offer that I can give you that you don't really are, that I know you're not going to really want.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    Is there a credibility gap here in the negotiations? People trusting with the other parties going to say and actually do?

  • YAMICHE ALCINDOR:

    I think there is a big credibility issue here. I want to read to you what one immigrant activist texted to me today. One, he is not credible. No one believes him or that he wouldn't change his mind tomorrow. Two, his proposals are temporary patches that the courts have already given us. And three, it's total B.S. to tie the shutdown to immigrants rights movements. So what we have is really a group of Democrats and a group of immigrant activists saying we don't believe that this president is really wanting immigrants here.

    I have to remind people that some of the immigrants that President Trump is talking out, they are from the country that the president said were s-hole countries. These are these are countries like Haiti, like Nigeria. Poor people fled their countries fled hurricanes and earthquakes to come to America to try to get a better life. And the president saying hey I think that you're equal, I think that we should all work on this together. And people just simply don't believe him.

  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

    Right. Yamiche Alcindor of PBS NewsHour, our White House Correspondent joining us from there today. Thanks so much.

  • YAMICHE ALCINDOR:

    Thanks.

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