Dem rep: 'If Mick Mulvaney were president, we could’ve solved' border talks at Camp David retreat

Rep. John YarmuthJohn Allen YarmuthTrump: Top Dems aren't allowing negotiators to make border security deal Dem rep: 'If Mick Mulvaney were president, we could’ve solved' border talks at Camp David retreat Bipartisan House group heads to Camp David retreat MORE (D-Ky.) said Sunday that he believes a group of lawmakers invited to Camp David over the weekend by Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyOvernight Health Care — Presented by National Taxpayers Union — Trump, Dems open drug price talks | FDA warns against infusing young people's blood | Facebook under scrutiny over health data | Harris says Medicare for all isn't socialism White House spokeswoman leaving to join PR firm Trump’s state of emergency declaration imperils defense budget MORE could have come to an agreement on border security "in less than a day" if the acting White House chief of staff were president.

Yarmuth indicated on ABC's "This Week" that he and other lawmakers had productive discussions at Camp David, but that outside factors prevent them from coming to an agreement.

"If [Rep. Tom GravesJohn (Tom) Thomas GravesHouse passes border deal, setting up Trump to declare emergency Lawmakers introduce bill to fund government, prevent shutdown The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the American Academy of HIV Medicine - Next 24 hours critical for stalled funding talks MORE (R-Ga.)] and I and the group that was up at Camp David, including Mick Mulvaney, were left to our own devices, we would’ve solved it in less than a day," he said. "And if Mick Mulvaney were president, we could’ve solved it."

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"The problem is … we have people of goodwill and intelligence and thoughtfulness who actually can negotiate all these things very easily, but then the outside world intervenes," Yarmuth added.

The Democrat noted that President TrumpDonald John TrumpJustice Department preparing for Mueller report as soon as next week: reports Smollett lawyers declare 'Empire' star innocent Pelosi asks members to support resolution against emergency declaration MORE and Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiWhy Omar’s views are dangerous Pelosi asks members to support resolution against emergency declaration Overnight Defense: Graham clashed with Pentagon chief over Syria | Talk grows that Trump will fire Coats | Coast Guard officer accused of domestic terrorism plot MORE (D-Calif.), frequent targets of partisan criticism, are not the only ones to blame for difficulties in talks. He cited "the right-wing media" and "left-wing organizations" as other sources that make it harder to reach a compromise.

"We have so many outside pressures that make it very, very difficult for us to come to a logical compromise and then sell it," Yarmuth said. "I don’t know the answer to that, but we could’ve gotten it done this weekend."

Trump triggered a recent 35-day government shutdown with his demand for $5.7 billion for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Democrats have offered funding for other border security measures, but no money for the wall.

The president agreed to reopen the government until Feb. 15 while a bipartisan group of lawmakers negotiate a deal to fund border security. Some members of the group expressed optimism a deal could be reached by Monday, but negotiations appeared to have stalled.

The president has threatened to declare a national emergency if needed to secure funding for the border wall. Several Republicans have expressed skepticism about such a move, however, which would likely prompt swift legal challenges.