Change is created when individuals show up, not when they boycott, like Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. Both Democrats decided not to attend a meeting with President Trump this week, to help avoid a government shutdown during the holidays. And the president made sure everyone knew about it.
Trump’s meeting with top congressional leaders, scheduled for Tuesday, went on as planned. However conspicuously absent from the crucial budget meeting were Pelosi and Schumer. The not-so-dynamic duo sat-out the event in protest over remarks the president made.
Prior to the meeting, the president commented that a bi-partisan budget deal was unlikely. “Meeting with ‘Chuck and Nancy’ today about keeping the government open and working. Problem is they want illegal immigrants flooding into our Country unchecked, are weak on Crime and want to substantially RAISE Taxes. I don’t see a deal!” Trump tweeted.
Schumer and Pelosi subsequently issued a joint statement, announcing they would not be meeting with Trump. “Given that the president doesn’t see a deal between Democrats the White House, we believe the best path forward is to continue negotiating with our Republican counterparts in Congress instead,” they said.
However, during the meeting, Trump made certain the empty chairs marked for Chuck and Nancy were very noticeable. Speaking to the press, President Trump said he “was not that surprised” the pair didn’t show up. “”Nothing to them is important other than raising taxes,” he told the media. He also accused them of being “all talk and no action.”
Responding on Twitter, Pelosi suggested Trump was abusive. “@realDonaldTrump now knows that his verbal abuse will no longer be tolerated. His empty chair photo opp showed he’s more interested in stunts than in addressing the needs of the American people, she tweeted. Poor Ryan and McConnell relegated to props. Sad!
Suffice it to say, McConnell and Ryan felt differently. “We have important work to do, and Democratic leaders have continually found new excuses not to meet with the administration to discuss these issues,” they said in a joint statement prior to the meeting.
If Democrats and Republicans cannot reach a budget compromise, a government shutdown could begin as soon as December 6.