Trump demands wall in letter to Congress

President TrumpDonald John TrumpDemocrats blast Trump for commuting Roger Stone: 'The most corrupt president in history' Trump confirms 2018 US cyberattack on Russian troll farm Trump tweets his support for Goya Foods amid boycott MORE on Friday sent a letter to lawmakers in both parties demanding a border wall ahead of talks with congressional leaders aimed at resolving the government shutdown. 
 
“Walls work,” Trump wrote. “That’s why rich, powerful, and successful people build them around their homes. All Americans deserve the same protection.”
 
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The letter is being hand-delivered to all congressional offices on Friday, according to the White House. 
 
The president also included a copy of the presentation that congressional leaders were supposed to hear during a Wednesday meeting about what the administration calls an immigration “crisis” at the U.S. southern border. 
 
That presentation, delivered by Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen NielsenKirstjen Michele NielsenThe Seila Law case: Liberty and political firing Hillicon Valley: Twitter falling short on pledge to verify primary candidates | Barr vows to make surveillance reforms after watchdog report | DHS cyber chief focused on 2020 Sen. Kennedy slams acting DHS secretary for lack of coronavirus answers MORE, was cut short when now-Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Justices rule Manhattan prosecutor, but not Congress, can have Trump tax records Supreme Court rulings reignite Trump oversight wars in Congress Pelosi on Baltimore's Columbus statue: 'If the community doesn't want the statue, the statue shouldn't be there' MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerDemocrats blast Trump for commuting Roger Stone: 'The most corrupt president in history' A renewed emphasis on research and development funding is needed from the government Data shows seven Senate Democrats have majority non-white staffs MORE (D-N.Y.) interrupted to engage with Trump in spending negotiations. 
 
“Some of those present did not want to hear the presentation at the time, and so I have instead decided to make the presentation available to all members of Congress,” Trump wrote.
 
Schumer, Pelosi and Republican leaders are heading back to the White House on Friday to resume the talks, though the chances of quickly ending the 14-day shutdown appear slim.
 
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders issued a warning to GOP senators seeking compromise before Friday's talks began while speaking to reporters: The president is not shying away from the $5 billion price tag he has demanded.

"Look, the president has been willing to negotiate from the beginning but he's not willing to put our national security and the safety of the American people at risk," Sanders said.
 
"This is what [Border Patrol agents] say they need in order to protect the citizens in this country and protect our borders," she added. "So the president's not backing down from that."
 
Trump has refused to back away from his demand for $5 billion in border wall funding, while Democrats have said that they don’t plan to provide the president any money for his long-promised wall.
 
The president’s letter made no mention of a bargain being floated by some senators that would exchange relief for young immigrants living in the U.S. without legal status in exchange for wall funding.
 
Instead, the presentation calls on Congress to override a legal settlement and revise refugee resettlement laws in order to be able to detain whole families and speed up deportations. Each provision is unpopular with Democrats.
 
Both sides have engaged in public posturing over the past several days, with Trump taking to the White House briefing room with leaders of the union representing border and immigration agents to make the case for the wall. 
 
Pelosi appeared on NBC News’s “Today” on Thursday morning, where she was asked if she would budge from her position. 
 
“How many more times can we say no? Nothing for the wall,” she responded.
  
-- Updated at 11:55 a.m.