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Ex-Obama and Reid staffers: McConnell would pretend to be busy to avoid meeting with Obama

Former staffers for President Obama and former Sen. Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidSenate heads home to campaign after deal on Trump nominees GOP has always been aggressive in trying to weaponize the system of judicial nominations Republicans come full circle with Supreme Court battle to the end MORE (D-Nev.) on Tuesday ripped Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP Senate candidate: Kavanaugh 'debacle' 'hugely motivating' to Missouri voters Trump praises McConnell: He ‘stared down the angry left-wing mob’ to get Kavanaugh confirmed Murkowski not worried about a Palin challenge MORE (R-Ky.) for criticizing Democratic leaders for declining a meeting with President Trump, saying McConnell used to pretend to be busy to avoid scheduling meetings with Obama.

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“I never refused to go to a meeting that President Obama called,” McConnell told reporters after Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerFive takeaways from the final Tennessee Senate debate Schumer rips Trump 'Medicare for all' op-ed as 'smears and sabotage' GOP senator suspects Schumer of being behind release of Ford letter MORE (D-N.Y.) and House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiGOP pollster: Republicans may hold on to the House in midterms Bloomberg visits New Hampshire, fueling 2020 speculation The Memo: Rust Belt race hinges on Trump MORE (D-Calif.) canceled a scheduled meeting with Trump, McConnell and Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanMcCarthy introduces bill to fully fund Trump's border wall On The Money: McCarthy offers bill to fully fund Trump border wall | US to press China on currency in trade talks | Mnuchin plans to go ahead with Saudi trip | How America's urban-rural divide is changing the Dems Election Countdown: Minnesota Dems worry Ellison allegations could cost them key race | Dems struggle to mobilize Latino voters | Takeaways from Tennessee Senate debate | Poll puts Cruz up 9 in Texas MORE (R-Wis.). 

McConnell said Schumer and Pelosi’s decision showed “a lack of seriousness” to work toward a deal on a government spending bill before the end of the year. 

“McConnell would also pretend to be ‘busy’ to prevent a meeting from being scheduled because he didn’t want his base to see him with Obama,” former Obama adviser Dan Pfeiffer tweeted. 

“Can confirm,” replied Adam Jentleson, former deputy chief of staff for Reid.

Other reporters pointed out that McConnell refused a meeting with Obama in 2010, opting instead to attend a dinner for the conservative Federalist Society.

Schumer and Pelosi backed out of the meeting after Trump tweeted Tuesday morning that he didn't "see a deal" with Democrats to avoid a government shutdown. 

"Meeting with 'Chuck and Nancy' today about keeping government open and working," Trump had said. “Problem is they want illegal immigrants flooding into our Country unchecked, are weak on Crime and want to substantially RAISE Taxes. I don’t see a deal!"

Democrats have insisted that any funding deal include protections for young immigrants brought to the country illegally as children after Trump announced plans to halt the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program earlier this year.

"Given that the President doesn’t see a deal between Democrats and the White House, we believe the best path forward is to continue negotiating with our Republican counterparts in Congress instead," Schumer said in a statement Tuesday.