Trump overrules GOP with deal on spending, debt, Harvey aid

07 September, 2017, 02:07 | Author: Chad Mckenzie
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President Donald Trump, siding with Democrats over his fellow Republicans, agreed on Wednesday that Congress should pass an extension of the USA debt limit until December 15, a government funding bill covering the same period and disaster aid for Hurricane Harvey victims, Democratic leaders said. "The president's decision to end DACA was heartless and it was brainless", he said.

Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan had good reason to be irritated by the distraction as they probably lost their last opportunity to dissuade President Trump from handing a win to the Democrats by agreeing to Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi's proposed three-month deal to raise the debt ceiling rather than side with the GOP's 18-month position.

The House on Wednesday easily approved almost $8 billion in Hurricane Harvey relief funding. A senior Democratic source conceded to CNN that Republicans are right, which is why Democratic leaders united before the White House meeting on demanding only a three-month extension for the debt ceiling along with hurricane funding.

Trump's deal ensures the government can borrow money and pay its bills into December in exchange for $8 billion in Harvey aid.

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McConnell, Ryan and Mnuchin pushed during the meeting for a longer-term debt-limit deal, according to several people with knowledge of the discussion.

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He added: "We had a very good meeting, we essentially came to a deal and I think the deal will be very good".

The agreement sets up what could be a major fight in December over government funding, Trump's proposed border wall with Mexico and Trump's decision to end a program that lets young undocumented immigrants stay in the USA, as well as perhaps the debt ceiling.

"Trump just killed tax reform", the Senate aide said.

Trump also expressed optimism that Congress could forge a deal on undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S.as children.

As a result of losing the White House and control of both houses of Congress, Democrats have begun the process of rebranding or reinventing themselves for the 2018 election cycle.

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Pelosi and Schumer said in their statement that "we also made it clear that we strongly believe the DREAM Act must come to the floor and pass as soon as possible and we will not rest until we get this done".

Capitol Hill Republicans were floored Wednesday after President Donald Trump cut a deal with Democratic leaders and agreed to a short-term debt ceiling increase many Republicans had publicly railed against just hours before.

Sen. Ben Sasse, a Nebraska Republican and consistent Trump critic, issued a one line statement: "The Pelosi-Schumer-Trump deal is bad". "I can not believe the Republicans are extending the debt ceiling-I am a Republican & I am embarrassed!", he tweeted.

The White House requested $7.85 billion for emergency Harvey aid and called for Congress to raise the debt ceiling immediately. The House approved the measure in a 419-3 vote.

Some conservative groups, such as Heritage Action, support this disaster aid without spending offsets. Republicans would have preferred a longer debt ceiling extension to avoid giving added leverage to Democrats negotiating in December.

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