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Schumer: Negotiating with Trump 'like negotiating with Jell-O'

The Hill logo The Hill 1/21/2018 Alexander Bolton

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Video by Wochit News

Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer (N.Y.) on Saturday blasted President Trump as an unreliable negotiating partner, fuming that working with him is "like negotiating with Jell-O" after a failure to secure a deal to avert a government shutdown.

"I told the president we Democrats were willing to fund the military at the highest levels in history, far above even his budget request," said Schumer, who said he also offered to put Trump's request for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border "on the table" at a White House meeting on Friday.

Schumer said Trump agreed to try for a four- or five-day government stopgap spending measure to give him and congressional leaders just enough time to reach a deal.

But then, Schumer said, the president changed his mind.

"Several hours later he called back. He said, 'So, I hear we have a three-week deal.' I said, 'No, Mr. President, no one is even talking about a three-week deal,' " Schumer recounted.

"Then a few hours later they called back again, 'Well we're going to need this, this, this in addition,' " Schumer said. "Things they knew were far, far right and off the table."

"Negotiating with this White House is like negotiating with Jell-O," Schumer said, drawing a comparison to the wobbly gelatin dessert.

"It's next to impossible. As soon as you take one step forward, the hard-right forces the president three steps back," Schumer said.

Schumer's comments came as lawmakers searched for a deal on Saturday to fund the government after Congress missed the deadline Friday night to prevent a shutdown.

Chuck Schumer holding a sign © Provided by The Hill

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