House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (N.Y.) say they and President Donald Trump have “agreed” to pass legislation to protect the nation’s 800,000 Dreamers from deportation. According to the two Democrats, who dined with Trump on Wednesday night, the proposal would not include a physical wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, although aides to the president have pushed back on such assertions.
“We had a very productive meeting at the White House with the president,” Pelosi and Schumer said in a joint statement. “The discussion focused on DACA. We agreed to enshrine the protections of DACA into law quickly, and to work out a package of border security, excluding the wall, that’s acceptable to both sides.”
The White House was far less definitive on Wednesday night, however, saying the meeting was a “constructive working dinner” and a “positive step toward the President’s strong commitment to bipartisan solutions for the issues most important to all Americans.”
Some reports say the Trump administration has already pushed back against assertions that an agreement on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) would exclude funds for the wall. Marc Short, the White House’s top legislative aide, said that Pelosi and Schumer’s statement was “misleading” and that no deal on DACA’s so-called Dreamers or a border wall has been reached.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that, while Dreamers were discussed, “excluding the wall was certainly not agreed to.”
In response to Sander’s statement, Matt House, Schumer’s communications director, said, “The president made clear he would continue pushing the wall, just not as part of this agreement.”