House Democrats to seek Trump's tax returns, Pelosi says


The press-filled Oval Office meeting had been slated to cover border wall funding and the looming possibility of a partial government shutdown, but it quickly gave way to a reality TV atmosphere, with jabs between the President and Democratic leaders.

Moments after returning to Capitol Hill after an Oval Office standoff with US President Donald Trump, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi questioned Trump's manhood and said the border wall was a matter of masculine pride.

Pelosi told the president the American people expected the government to stay open, adding: "You should not have a Trump shutdown".

Trump's comments have made it hard for Republican leaders to negotiate even as they try to avoid a shutdown that neither party wants.

Pelosi's encounter with Trump came as she continues to try and win votes among fellow Democrats to be elected speaker next month.

The accord gives Pelosi a clear path to becoming the most powerful Democrat in government and a leading role in confronting President Donald Trump during the 2020 presidential and congressional campaigns.

"We're doing this in a very friendly manner", Trump said. Chuck Schumer, the top Senate Democrat. "We are proud that our agreement will make lasting institutional change that will strengthen our caucus and will help develop the next generation of Democratic leaders".

"This Trump shutdown, this temper tantrum that he seems to throw, will not get him his wall and will hurt a lot of people", said Mr Schumer.

Prior to Tuesday's public spat, Trump said the military would build his promised border wall if Congress did not sign off his funding proposal.

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"If we don't get what we want, one way or the other ..."

The administration official said, "Additionally, activities that are supported by multi-year funding, such as FEMA's Disaster Relief Fund, will continue operations", referring to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The party secured control of the House for the first time in eight years during last month's midterm elections, picking up at least 40 seats.

Louisiana Rep. Steve Scalise, the No. 3 House Republican, said his party would fight for Trump's $5 billion request, but he also encouraged bipartisan talks to continue.

"That's a long time", she said at a news conference a day after she and seven insurgents who'd been pushing for younger leadership announced their pact.

Tuesday's televised bout offered a tantalizing preview of divided government in Trump's Washington.

Rep. Ed Perlmutter, D-Colo., a dissident and friend of Pelosi's, said the two began seeking middle ground after she called him around Thanksgiving.

"Republicans still control the House, the Senate, and the White House, and they have the power to keep government open", said the two leaders.

With the 51 Republicans needing 60 votes to pass the package, Democrats refused to support it as they demanded help for "Dreamers" - more than 700,000 immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally as children. "We have to get TOUGHER AND SMARTER than ever before, and we will. Need the WALL, need the BAN!"

Before the meeting, Trump threatened to have the United States military build the wall if Congressional votes can not be found.