Trump: GOP is ‘totally unified’ on border strategy

President TrumpDonald John TrumpHow to stand out in the crowd: Kirsten Gillibrand needs to find her niche Countdown clock is on for Mueller conclusions Omar: White supremacist attacks are rising because Trump publicly says 'Islam hates us' MORE emerged from a closed-door meeting with Senate Republicans downplaying signs of division within the party by saying they are “totally unified” in the border wall fight.

“I would say that we have a very, very unified party,” Trump told reporters at the U.S. Capitol after meeting with Senate Republicans for more than an hour.

Trump, standing next to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellLessons from the 1999 U.S. military intervention in Kosovo Five things to watch as AIPAC conference kicks off Romney helps GOP look for new path on climate change MORE (R-Ky.), said the party was totally “unified” and had “no discussion about anything other than solidarity.”


The closed-door meeting comes on day 19 of the partial shutdown, with no signs of an agreement to reopen the government. Trump will meet with congressional leadership at the White House later Wednesday.

McConnell echoed Trump in painting a unified front, saying GOP senators were “behind the president.”

But several senators have publicly raised concerns with Trump’s strategy. The president has doubled down on his demand for $5.7 billion for the border — an amount that can’t pass either chamber. 

GOP senators leaving the sit-down said some “concerns” about the strategy were raised during the meeting, which was their first opportunity to directly question Trump. Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsSenate GOP poised to go 'nuclear' on Trump picks Overnight Health Care: CDC pushes for expanding HIV testing, treatment | Dem group launches ads attacking Trump on Medicare, Medicaid cuts | Hospitals, insurers spar over surprise bills | O'Rourke under pressure from left on Medicare for all Dem group launches ads attacking Trump's 'hypocrisy on Medicare and Medicaid cuts' MORE (R-Maine), Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiRed dresses displayed around American Indian museum to memorialize missing, murdered native women Juan Williams: Don't rule out impeaching Trump The 25 Republicans who defied Trump on emergency declaration MORE (R-Alaska) and Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioCountdown clock is on for Mueller conclusions Rubio wants 'all' of Mueller report made public including founding documents Rubio: Trump reversal on North Korea sanctions 'shouldn't have happened that way' MORE (R-Fla.) all said they raised concerns with the president about the impact the shutdown was having on their constituents.

But Trump downplayed the differences, saying that “a couple” asked about strategy “but they are with us all the way.”

“Everybody in that room was fantastic,” Trump added. “There was no reason for me even to be here.”

Alexander Bolton contributed to this report, which was updated at 2:45 p.m.