President Trump said on Tuesday he hopes the latest missile launch by North Korea will bring his political critics back to the table, this he said while scolding Democratic leaders for skipping talks about a new spending plan,
“They should be calling immediately and saying we want to see you,” Trump told reporters at the White House, saying the latest missile launch by North Korea “will have a huge effect” on budget talks.
The launch came less than two weeks after a Trump trip to Asia in which he asked China and other nations to pressure North Korea into giving up its nuclear weapons program. “I will only tell you that we will take care of it,” Trump said.
Officials in the United States, South Korea, and Japan said Kim Jong Un’s government initiated a rare afternoon launch of an intercontinental missile, one that appeared to land in Japan’s exclusive economic zone.
Trump has described the Democrats as “all talk” and “no action,” but also said the North Korea missile launch may revive negotiations over a spending plan designed to head off a government shutdown on Dec. 8 – presumably, to keep spending going for the military.
“After North Korea missile launch, it’s more important than ever to fund our gov’t & military!,” Trump said on Twitter. “Dems shouldn’t hold troop funding hostage for amnesty & illegal immigration. I ran on stopping illegal immigration and won big. They can’t now threaten a shutdown to get their demands.”
Earlier in the day, Trump said he “would absolutely blame Democrats” if the government shuts down.
The president spoke after a session with House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell that Trump described as “something of a lovefest.”
In predicting passage of a tax cut plan with Republican votes, Trump also ripped Democratic congressional leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi for skipping the meeting after a criticism from Trump.
Sen. Schumer and Rep. Pelosi announced their boycott after Trump tweeted “I don’t see a deal” because of differences over immigration, crime, and taxes.
Describing Trump as “a destructive force,” Schumer said earlier Tuesday that “it would be a waste of everyone’s time to continue working with someone who clearly has no interest in coming to an agreement.”