Pelosi mocks Trump claim on Mexico paying for wall: ‘The Oval Office is an evidence-free zone’

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) at a press briefing on Thursday mocked President Trump’s claim that Mexico is “paying for the wall” through savings the U.S. will make in a new trade deal known as the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). 

Pelosi said the claim “doesn’t make any sense,” calling the Oval Office an “evidence-free zone.”  

Her comments came in response to Trump’s Thursday morning tweet: “I often stated, ‘One way or the other, Mexico is going to pay for the Wall.’ This has never changed. Our new deal with Mexico (and Canada), the USMCA, is so much better than the old, very costly & anti-USA NAFTA deal, that just by the money we save, MEXICO IS PAYING FOR THE WALL!” 

Pelosi said he made the same claim during her meeting with him this week. 

{mosads}”Basically what he’s saying, any benefit that our economy might have from a revised trade agreement with Mexico and Canada would be spent on the wall instead of growing our economy and increasing paychecks for our workers,” Pelosi told reporters. “The American people are still paying the price. Mexico is not paying for this wall.”

“But maybe he doesn’t understand how a trade agreement works for him to say such a thing,” she continued. 

Trump’s tweet came as the president has been pushing for Congress to approve the USMCA, which would replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The president has threatened to scrap NAFTA in order to ramp up pressure on the incoming Democratic House. 

Pelosi noted that Trump “doesn’t even have the trade agreement” yet.

“I think the Oval Office is an evidence-free zone,” she said. “You’ve got to have facts, data, evidence, truth in order to make an agreement on how you go forward.” 

Pelosi mentioned some of her qualms with USMCA, including a lack of environmental protections. Multiple Democrats have expressed concerns about the trade deal, indicating they will put up a fight in the 116th Congress. It could wind up taking months to push the deal through with Democrats assuming the House majority. 

Trump this week threatened to partially shut down the government unless he gets the $5 billion he wants for the border wall. Before a meeting with Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Pelosi, Trump threatened that the U.S. military would build remaining sections of the wall if Democrats “do not give us votes to secure our country.”

Tags Charles Schumer Donald Trump Nancy Pelosi
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