CBS ‘Face The Nation’ host Margaret Brennan sat down with President Trump to discuss his options for what to do when we reach the Feb. 15 deadline to broker a compromise on government funding for a border wall.
The president declined to rule out another government shutdown and threatened to declare a national emergency if the bipartisan committee negotiating the funding does not provide money for his proposed border wall. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has said the committee will provide no funding for a border wall while the president predicted that eventually Pelosi will be begging for a wall.
About negotiating with House Speaker Pelosi, President Trump told CBS: “She can keep playing her games, but we will win. Because we have a much better issue. On a political basis, what she’s doing is- I actually think it’s bad politics, but much more importantly it’s very bad for our country.”
“She knows that you need a barrier. She knows that we need border security. She wanted to win a political point,” the president said. “Basically, she wants open borders. She doesn’t mind human trafficking or she wouldn’t do this.”
MARGARET BRENNAN: Would you shut down the government again?
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Well, we’re going to have to see what happens on February 15th and I- I think–
MARGARET BRENNAN: You’re not taking it off the table?
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Well, I don’t- I don’t take anything off the table. I don’t like to take things off the table. It’s that alternative. It’s national emergency, it’s other things and you know there have been plenty national emergencies called. And this really is an invasion of our country by human traffickers. These are people that are horrible people bringing in women mostly, but bringing in women and children into our country. Human trafficking. And we’re going to have a strong border. And the only way you have a strong border is you need a physical barrier. You need a wall. And anybody that says you don’t, they’re just playing games.
MARGARET BRENNAN: You had quite the showdown with Speaker Pelosi. What did you learn about negotiating with her?
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Well, I think that she was very rigid – which I would expect – but I think she is very bad for our country. She knows that you need a barrier. She knows that we need border security. She wanted to win a political point. I happen to think it’s very bad politics because basically, she wants open borders. She doesn’t mind human trafficking or she wouldn’t do this because you know–
MARGARET BRENNAN: She offered you over a billion dollars for border security.
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Excuse me?
MARGARET BRENNAN: She offered over a billion dollars for border security. She doesn’t want the wall.
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: She’s- she’s costing the country hundreds of billions of dollars because what’s happening is when you have a porous border, and when you have drugs pouring in, and when you have people dying all over the country because of people like Nancy Pelosi who don’t want to give proper border security for political reasons, she’s doing a terrible disservice to our country. And on the 15th we have now set the table beautifully because everybody knows what’s going on because of the shutdown. People that didn’t have any idea- they didn’t have a clue as to what was happening, they now know exactly what’s happening. They see human trafficking. They see drugs and gangs and criminals pouring in. Now, we catch them because we’re doing a great job. But if we had proper border security we wouldn’t have to work so hard and we could do an even better job, and I think Nancy Pelosi is doing a terrible disservice to the people of our country. But she can–
MARGARET BRENNAN: You’re still going to have to deal with her now.
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: No, she can keep playing her games, but we will win. Because we have a much better issue. On a political basis, what she’s doing is- I actually think it’s bad politics, but much more importantly it’s very bad for our country.