After meeting with Democratic leaders at the White House on Wednesday, President Donald Trump said an agreement on the undocumented immigrants protected under the rescinded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program is “fairly close.”
Trump briefly spoke to reporters as he prepared to depart for Florida on Thursday, a day after meeting with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.
“We want to get massive border security, and I think that both Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, I think they agree with it,” Trump said. “And I think we’re fairly close but we have to get massive border security.”
He added, “Look, 92 percent of the people agree on DACA, but what we want is we want very, very powerful border security.”
Earlier in the day, Trump denied in a post on Twitter that an agreement was reached on DACA in an apparent response to a statement by Schumer and Pelosi.
“No deal was made last night on DACA. Massive border security would have to be agreed to in exchange for consent. Would be subject to vote,” Trump tweeted.
Schumer and Pelosi said in the statement that they had reached an agreement with Trump to enshrine the protections of DACA into law and to work out a border security package that excludes the construction of the border wall.
A subsequent statement from Schumer and Pelosi said Trump’s tweets were not inconsistent with the agreement reached at the meeting, noting that there was no final deal.
“We agreed that the President would support enshrining DACA protections into law, and encourage the House and Senate to act,” Schumer and Pelosi said.
They added, “What remains to be negotiated are the details of border security, with a mutual goal of finalizing all details as soon as possible.”
Schumer and Pelosi said both sides agreed the border wall would not be part of the deal, although they acknowledged Trump made clear he intends to continue to pursue the wall.
In his comments to reporters, Trump declared that the border wall is “going to be built” but said funding would come “a little bit later.”
The news of the tentative agreement angered conservatives, who accused Trump of going back on his campaign promise to crack down on illegal immigration.
Breitbart News, which is run by former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, featured headlines referring to Trump as “Amnesty Don.”
Congressman Steve King, R-Iowa, an immigration hardliner, claimed in a tweet that as a result of the agreement Trump’s…