White House calls bipartisan meeting on partial government shutdown ‘constructive’

January 16, 2019

The White House said President Trump had a “constructive” meeting with bipartisan lawmakers from the congressional “problem solvers caucus” Wednesday on the partial government shutdown.

“They listened to one another and now both have a good understanding of what the other wants,” said White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders. “We look forward to more conversations like this.”

At least seven Democratic House lawmakers attended the meeting, a day after other Democrats turned down the president’s invitation to meet.

The Democrats who attended the session in the White House Situation Room were Reps. Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey; Thomas Suozzi, Anthony Brindisi and Max Rose of New York; Vincente Gonzalez of Texas; Dean Phillips of Minnesota; and Abigail Spanberger of Virginia.

“Over the last weeks, we have been listening to our constituents and speaking with our fellow Members of Congress in both parties and in both chambers,” they said in a statement before the meeting. There is strong agreement across the aisle and around the country: We must reopen the government. Our security, safety, and economy have been compromised, and millions of families are suffering.”

They added, “There is also strong agreement that if we reopen the government, the possibility exists to work together and find common ground to tackle some of our country’s toughest problems and fix them. But that conversation can only begin in earnest once the government is reopened. We accepted the White House’s invitation to meet today to convey that message.”

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