WASHINGTON (AP)- President Donald Trump on Thursday said he was “fairly close” to a deal with congressional leaders to preserve protections for young immigrants living illegally in America, and is insisting on “massive border security” as part of any agreement.
Trump, speaking to reporters before surveying hurricane damage in Florida, pushed back against Democratic leaders who claimed there was a deal on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) initiative. He also said his promised wall along the U.S.-Mexico border would “come later.”
“We’re working on a plan subject to getting massive border controls. We’re working on a plan for DACA. People want to see that happen,” Trump said. He added: “’I think we’re fairly close but we have to get massive border security.”
Trump, in a series of early morning tweets, had contradicted the characterization of a private White House dinner on Wednesday night by his guests, Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York and Rep. Nancy Pelosi of California, the top Democrats on Capitol Hill. Trump denied there was a deal.
Schumer and Pelosi said in a statement after that get-together that they had agreed to “enshrine the protections of DACA into law quickly” and to work out a package on border security, excluding Trump’s planned border wall.