WASHINGTON (CNN) — President Donald Trump on Saturday launched a new plan to end the government shutdown, offering temporary protection from deportations for some undocumented immigrants in exchange for $5.7 billion in wall funding.
But Democrats swiftly rejected the proposal, which also includes millions of dollars for humanitarian aid and drug detection technology, and called on Trump to open the government before negotiations on immigration could start.
The President delivered a short speech from the White House in an attempt to shift the political dynamics of the longest government shutdown in history after polls showed that he was getting most of the blame. He had previously said he would be “proud” to close down the government in the wall fight.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi did not even wait for the speech to reject the proposal. She said it was a “a compilation of several previously rejected initiatives, each of which is unacceptable and in total, do not represent a good faith effort to restore certainty to people’s lives.”
“It is unlikely that any one of these provisions alone would pass the House, and taken together, they are a non-starter. For one thing, this proposal does not include the permanent solution for the Dreamers and TPS recipients that our country needs and supports,” Pelosi said in a statement.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said that the President’s offer was not really an offer at all.
“It was the President who singled-handedly took away DACA and TPS protections in the first place — offering some protections back in exchange for the wall is not a compromise but more hostage taking,” Schumer said in a statement.
Though it was quickly rejected by Democrats, Trump’s proposal could move the politics of the shutdown to a new stage, as various bills to reopen the government and fund the wall are debated on Capitol Hill, after weeks of fruitless negotiations between Democrats and the President.