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The new Congress: Pelosi retakes House gavel as shutdown continues

Now that Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is leading the House for her third term, she faces a tricky political landscape and a big agenda. (Video: Jenny Starrs/The Washington Post, Photo: Melina Mara/The Washington Post)

The House of Representatives elected Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) as speaker for a second time Thursday, the first day of a new, divided Congress that is more likely to confront President Trump.

The 78-year-old California Democrat secured the votes of 220 members of a total of 430 present. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), the top Republican in the chamber, received 192 votes.

Pelosi tamped down a challenge from a group of Democratic rebels clamoring for a generational change in leadership. She took over as the partial government shutdown was in its 13th day, with no end in sight to the dispute over Trump’s demand for billions of dollars for a U.S.-Mexico border wall.

By the end of the day, Pelosi had pushed through legislation to reopen the government. But it has already been declared dead on arrival in the Republican-led Senate because it won’t meet Trump’s $5.6 billion demand.

10 p.m.: House Democrats approve bills to reopen government; Pence pledges ‘no deal without a wall’

The House closed out the first day of the 116th Congress by passing six spending bills to reopen almost all of the federal agencies that have been closed since the partial shutdown began Dec. 22.

Trump has promised a veto, and in an appearance on Fox News Thursday night, Vice President Pence maintained that any legislation that does not include border wall funding is a non-starter.

“The president’s made it clear, we’re here to make a deal, but it’s a deal that’s going to result in achieving real gains on border security,” he told host Tucker Carlson. “And you have no border security without a wall. We will have no deal without a wall.”

That means both sides have their work cut out for them if they are to make any progress toward a compromise when they meet Friday at the White House.

9:45 p.m.: House approves bill to deny new border wall funding

House Democrats passed legislation that would provide stopgap funding for the Department of Homeland Security, reopening the department but denying Trump the more than $5 billion he’s demanding for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

The House is expected to approve another set of bills this evening that would reopen other federal agencies that have been closed since the partial shutdown began Dec. 22.

The measures would need support from the Senate and the president’s signature to end the shutdown, but Trump has promised a veto and GOP Senate leaders say they won’t take up a measure that does not have his support.

8 p.m.: House passes new rules package

The House on Thursday passed a new rules package despite a revolt from some liberal Democrats. The new rules were approved on a 234-to-197 vote. Three Republicans — Reps. Tom Reed (N.Y.), John Katko (N.Y.) and Brian Fitzpatrick (Pa.) — crossed party lines to vote “yes” along with most Democrats. Three Democrats — Reps. Ro Khanna (Calif.), Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.) — voted “no.”

Both Khanna and Ocasio-Cortez had earlier announced they would oppose the package because of the inclusion of a fiscal measure known as “pay as you go,” or paygo, requiring the House to offset any spending so as not to increase the budget deficit.

The wide-reaching package will bring about a number of changes, including the reinstatement of the “Gephardt Rule,” which allows the House to automatically raise the debt limit when a joint budget resolution is adopted. It will also ban discrimination against LGBT members and staff and will allow individuals to wear religious head coverings on the House floor.

“This rules package signals a new start for the House,” House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said in a statement. “We will go from the most closed Congress in history to a period when Americans finally have a House that is on their side.”

7:30 p.m.: Pelosi invites Trump to deliver State of the Union on Jan. 29

Pelosi sent a letter to Trump Thursday evening inviting him to the Capitol to deliver his second State of the Union address on Jan. 29.

In her letter, Pelosi noted that the Constitution “established the legislative, executive and judicial branches as co-equal branches of government, to be a check and balance on each other.” The president, she added, is also called to “from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union.”

“In the spirit of our Constitution, I invite you to deliver your State of the Union address before a Joint Session of Congress on Tuesday, January 29, 2019 in the House Chamber,” Pelosi wrote.

Trump delivered his first official State of the Union on Jan. 30, 2018. His first address to Congress as president was in February 2017.

7:00 p.m.: ‘We are diligent and persistent in trying to open up government,’ Pelosi says

In their first press conference of the new Congress, House Democrats urged their Republican counterparts in the Senate to consider legislation that the House is set to pass later Thursday night to end the partial federal government shutdown.

“We are diligent and persistent in trying to open up government,” Pelosi said. “As I said today on the floor, we will take good ideas from wherever they come, including the idea of the appropriations bills passed by the Republicans in the United States Senate.”

Hoyer confirmed that Democrats will go to the White House on Friday to negotiate with Trump. “But holding 800,000 people hostage, holding the people’s government hostage is not what [Americans] expect, not what they want,” he said.

Rep. Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.), the incoming chair of the House Appropriations Committee, noted that Thursday marks the first time in history that the government has been shut down as a new Congress convenes.

Democrats will vote Thursday evening on legislation that Trump has already vowed to veto over its lack of funding for a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Ahead of the vote, Sen. Susan Collins (Maine) joined Sen. Cory Gardner (Colo.) to become the second Republican in the Senate to call for Trump to end the shutdown without receiving the funding he has demanded for his long-promised border wall.

5:20 p.m.: GOP senator calls for Trump to reopen government; Trump tweets ‘The Wall is Coming’

Sen. Cory Gardner (Colo.) on Thursday became the first Republican senator to urge Trump to drop his demands for border wall funding and end the partial government shutdown.

“I think we should pass a continuing resolution to get the government back open,” said Gardner, who faces a potentially difficult reelection race in 2020. “The Senate has done it last Congress; we should do it again today.”

Gardner said Congress should pass legislation that contains the funding figure that Democrats have already agreed to.

“We can pass legislation that has the appropriations number in it while we continue to get more,” he said. “But we should continue to do our jobs and get the government open and let Democrats explain why they no longer support border security.”

Trump appears to be far from heeding that advice. Early Thursday evening, he posted a photo of himself on his official Instagram account along with the words, “The Wall is Coming.”

The post was a reference to the phrase “Winter is Coming” from the television show “Game of Thrones.” At a Cabinet meeting Wednesday, Trump displayed a similar poster with the words, “Sanctions are Coming,” in reference to tightening U.S. policy toward Iran.

4:35 p.m.: Trump makes surprise appearance in White House briefing room

Trump addressed reporters on Thursday afternoon, making his first appearance in the White House briefing room but taking no questions.

Flanked by several members of the National Border Patrol Council, Trump congratulated Pelosi on her “tremendous achievement” of being reelected speaker of the House. He also maintained that he has “never had so much support as I have in the last week over my stance on border security . . . and for, frankly, the wall, or the barrier.”

National Border Patrol Council President Brandon Judd then stepped up to the microphone, defending Trump’s plan for a border wall.

“I promise you that if you interview Border Patrol agents, they will tell you that walls work,” Judd said. The union represents 16,500 border agents and endorsed Trump for president in 2016.

Trump and the union leaders departed a few minutes later, ignoring shouted questions from reporters.

4:25 p.m.: Congressional leaders to meet with Trump on Friday

Pelosi and other congressional leaders will head back to the White House on Friday for a meeting with Trump on border security, according to White House and Capitol Hill aides.

The meeting comes on the heels of Wednesday’s huddle, at which Trump rejected a plan from Democrats to reopen key parts of the federal government. Neither side has offered any indication that a deal is within reach.

Meanwhile, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders is set to give a briefing Thursday afternoon.

3:45 p.m.: House Democrats block GOP effort to make tax provisions permanent

In their first act as the minority party, House Republicans moved shortly after Pelosi finished her speech to force a vote on their own policy priorities — tax cuts, to be specific.

Rep. Kevin Brady (Tex.) — the ranking Republican and former chairman of the Ways and Means Committee — called a procedural motion to make permanent two provisions from the 2017 GOP tax bill. One increases the Child Tax Credit, the other doubles the previous standard deduction.

Democrats immediately moved to table the proposal, which would have interrupted their plans to hold votes on reopening the federal government, as well as coming votes on health care, ethics and other issues.

3:35 p.m.: New Congress includes 127 women, an all-time high

On Thursday, Pelosi swore into office a record number of women: There are 102 women in the House and 25 in the Senate. They have changed the face of Congress and make up nearly a quarter of the voting membership.

The freshman class in the House is the youngest and most racially diverse in history. It includes the first Muslim and first Native American women. Several states have sent African American women to the House for the first time, and Texas, a state that is 40 percent Hispanic, has elected its first Latinas. Several of the new women identify as lesbian or bisexual. In the Senate, six states are now represented only by women, also a first.

Read more about the new women in Congress here.

2:50 p.m.: Pelosi addresses the House, takes oath of office

Pelosi addressed the House for the first time since being reelected speaker, prompting a standing ovation when she told the assembled lawmakers that she was “particularly proud to be the woman speaker of the House of this Congress, which marks the 100th year of women having the right to vote.”

She drew another standing ovation when she noted that more than 100 female members were serving in the new Congress, the largest number in history. She then spoke of her vision for the House at a time of divided government.

“Our nation is at a historic moment,” Pelosi said. “Two months ago, the American people spoke and demanded a new dawn. They called upon the beauty of our Constitution: Our system of checks and balances that protects our democracy, remembering that the legislative branch is Article I: the first branch of government, coequal to the presidency and to the judiciary.”

She called on lawmakers to “be pioneers of the future” and work to “redeem the promise of the American Dream for every family, advancing progress for every community.”

She pledged that the House will be the “champions of the middle class,” protecting Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security and ensuring that struggling families have “an economy that works for you.”

And she urged both chambers to “work to put an end to the inaction and denial of science that threaten the planet and the future.”

In what appeared to be a veiled reference to Trump, Pelosi said that lawmakers will “respect each other, and we will respect the truth.”

She concluded with a tribute to former president George H.W. Bush, who died last month, and announced that as their first act, House Democrats would be introducing legislation to reopen the government to “meet the needs of the American people, to protect our borders, and to respect our workers.”

Pelosi took the oath of office, surrounded by dozens of children and grandchildren of lawmakers, then swore in the other members of the House.

“I now call the House to order on behalf of all of America’s children,” Pelosi said. “Yea, kids!”

2:25 p.m.: McCarthy hands gavel to Pelosi, introduces her as next speaker

McCarthy struck a note of bipartisanship as he introduced Pelosi, praising the new speaker as “an experienced leader with three decades of service in Congress, a fighter for her causes, and a true trailblazer.”

“We are now entering a period of divided government, but that is no excuse for gridlock and inaction,” McCarthy said. “We are at our best when we focus not on retribution but on building a more perfect union.”

He maintained that his party will refuse to compromise on one core principle. “Republicans will always choose personal freedom over government control,” he said.

But he said that even when both sides disagree with each other, “it is important to remember that we are bonded together in a common cause: our love for America.”

McCarthy then handed the gavel to Pelosi and the two shook hands. Pelosi soon began her remarks and thanked McCarthy, who, seated in the chamber, briefly looked up before appearing to turn back to his phone.

2:20 p.m.: GOP super PAC wastes little time in criticizing Pelosi

A super PAC aligned with Republican leaders of the House criticized Pelosi on Thursday as “an out-of-touch San Francisco liberal” shortly after she prevailed in the vote for speaker.

“Democratic candidates spent the last two years promising voters that they’d be different — they wouldn’t stand for the same old leadership and the same old way of doing business in Washington,” Dan Conston, the group’s president, said in a statement. “Yet with the very first chance they got, they broke their word and their bond with the voters who elected them. CLF will make sure voters know that their member of Congress already broke their word, all to support an out-of-touch San Francisco liberal who is desperate to hold on to power.”

2:15 p.m.: McConnell says ‘no particular role’ for him in shutdown negotiations

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) distanced himself Thursday from the tense negotiations over border security funding and the partial government shutdown, which is in its 13th day.

“I haven’t been sidelined — it’s just that there’s no particular role for me to play when you have this setup,” he told reporters.

McConnell, who has been at the center of breaking logjams between Democrats and Republicans, made clear that he sees a different dynamic in this standoff.

Last month, McConnell cleared the way for the Senate to unanimously approve a measure to avert a shutdown — only to be thwarted by Trump, who refused to support the agreement, over his demands for border wall funding.

Since then, McConnell has stepped back, asserting repeatedly that he will only hold another vote on a bill that Trump agrees to sign and that also has the necessary Democratic backing to clear the 60-vote threshold in the Senate.

“Ultimately the solution to this is a deal between the president and Nancy and Chuck because we need some of Chuck’s votes and obviously we need Nancy’s support,” said McConnell, referring to Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Pelosi.

McConnell said several Democrats have asked him to get involved, “but I don’t see how that leads to an outcome, and I want to get an outcome.”

1:45 p.m.: Pelosi reclaims the House speaker’s gavel

Pelosi won the speakership Thursday afternoon, in a House vote that was marked by the defections of 15 Democrats. The number of defections was fewer than the roughly three-dozen members who did not vote for Pelosi in November’s closed-door House Democratic caucus session.

On the Republican side, six members voted for someone other than McCarthy. The Post’s Mike DeBonis has the full breakdown:

1:15 p.m.: White House issues new warning against aggressive oversight

As the House voted Thursday for its next speaker, the White House issued a fresh warning about investigating President Trump.

“If the Democrats go down that losing pathway of just focusing on subpoenas, I think it will hurt them in the long run,” White House spokeswoman Mercedes Schlapp said during an interview on Fox News.

Schlapp said that Trump “wants to work on policy,” citing infrastructure and trade as two issues on which he and Congress could work together.

On the day after the November midterms, Trump threatened to adopt a “warlike posture” against Democrats if they used their newly won control of the House to investigate his financial and political dealings.

The signs point to Democrats aggressively using their oversight power.

Earlier this month, Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), the incoming chairman of the House Oversight Committee, fired off more than 50 letters seeking documents on a wide array of issues, including Ivanka Trump’s email practices, the Trump administration’s policy of family separations at the border, and its handling of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico.

1 p.m.: House begins vote for speaker

Pelosi was greeted with multiple standing ovations among Democrats as she was nominated by Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.), who hailed her work on behalf of the Democratic agenda.

“Let me be clear, House Democrats are down with NDP — Nancy D’Alesandro Pelosi,” Jeffries said, in what was perhaps the first nod to a Naughty by Nature song in a nominating speech for House speaker.

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), one of only 13 women in House GOP ranks, nominated Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) praising him as a leader who “will never compromise on our fundamental rights and freedoms” and “stand against the fraud of socialism.”

House Republicans gave several standing ovations, including when Cheney said McCarthy supports efforts to “build the wall.”

12:50 p.m.: Trump touts strength of GOP as Democrats take control of House

Shortly after the Democrats took control of the House on Thursday, Trump took to Twitter to praise Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel and assert that the party “has never been stronger.”

“We achieved historic wins with her help last year!” Trump wrote.

In the November midterms, Democrats made a net gain of 40 seats in the House, flipping control of the chamber. Republicans expanded their majority in the Senate by two seats.

12 p.m.: 116th Congress convenes

The 115th Congress gaveled out and the 116th convened Thursday afternoon, with Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II (D-Mo.), a United Methodist pastor giving the opening prayer in the House.

“When we leave this place, we will, with your blessing, launch a bold attempt to become the architects of a kindlier nation,” Cleaver said, calling for Congress “to rise as a legislative body above political selfishness” and “address the great challenges of this day, that are fraught with tribalism at home and turbulence abroad.”

After the Pledge of Allegiance, the House began its quorum call. Not present is Mark Harris, the GOP candidate in North Carolina’s 9th District, who said he planned to meet with investigators Thursday amid a probe into election fraud allegations.

Among the special guests present for the proceedings is singer Tony Bennett, who is in the front row of the speaker’s suite overlooking the House floor. Directly behind him is Mickey Hart, drummer of the Grateful Dead. Pelosi’s most loyal backers are wearing and handing out MADAME SPEAKER pins.

Meanwhile in the Senate, Vice President Pence began administering the oath of office to elected members in small groups.

11:45 a.m.: Romney brushes aside criticism over op-ed

As he prepared for his swearing-in as a senator from Utah, Mitt Romney brushed aside criticism from fellow Republicans over his op-ed criticizing President Trump.

“I’m not worried about what other people think about what I have to say,” he said. “I just want to hear what they have to say about their priorities and their perspectives.”

Romney, who appeared briefly outside his temporary office in the basement of the Russell Senate Office Building, also defended the timing of his words.

“Some people said, ‘Well, you should have waited a couple of months, or four months.’ I’m not sure what makes special one time versus another, other than to do your very best from the beginning to describe what’s important to you,” he said.

Romney said it was “important as I step into the Senate in this new responsibility, to lay out my priorities and my perspectives, which I was able to do.”

In the op-ed published in The Washington Post on Tuesday night, Romney said Trump’s “most glaring” shortfall has been in shaping the character of the nation.

On Wednesday, Trump responded on Twitter, imploring Romney to be a “team player.” Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel also chided Romney — her uncle — saying the piece was “disappointing and unproductive.”

11:30 a.m.: Democrats to hold hearing on Medicare-for-all legislation

The new Democratic majority in the House will hold the first hearings on Medicare-for-all legislation, a longtime goal of the party’s left, after Pelosi lent her support for the process.

“It’s a huge step forward to have the speaker’s support,” said Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), who will be the House sponsor of the legislation, usually denoted as HR 676. “We have to push on the inside while continuing to build support for this on the outside.”

Some version of universal health care has been a Democratic goal for decades. The Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act, first introduced in 2003 by then-Rep. John Conyers Jr. of Michigan, has become the vehicle for Democrats who want to bring single-payer, Canada-style health care to the United States.

Read more from The Post’s David Weigel here.

11:20 a.m.: Trump mocks Elizabeth Warren, a potential 2020 rival

As the new Congress prepared to convene, Trump took to Twitter to mock Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), a potential 2020 presidential rival, for her claim of Native American heritage.

Trump shared a doctored bumper sticker for Warren, who announced earlier this week that she was launching a presidential exploratory committee. Instead of “Warren 2020,” the bumper sticker was altered to say “Warren 1/2020th.”

That’s a reference to Warren’s decision in October to release results of a DNA test that said she probably had a distant Native American ancestor. The report found the ancestor was possibly six to 10 generations back.

Asked about Trump’s tweet, Warren told reporters that Trump should spend his time “getting the government back open.”

10:45 a.m.: More blame Trump for shutdown than Democrats, poll finds

A new poll finds more Americans are blaming President Trump than Democrats for the partial government shutdown, but there has been little change in his overall job rating.

Forty eight percent say Trump is most to blame for the shutdown, while 35 percent blame congressional Democrats and 4 percent blame congressional Republicans, according to the Economist/YouGov survey released Wednesday.

When asked to assess blame individually, 53 percent say Trump deserves “a lot” of blame for causing the shutdown, while 41 percent blame Democrats in Congress a lot and 40 percent blame Republicans in Congress a lot.

Trump’s job approval rating has changed little since the shutdown began, according to the poll, standing at 42 percent approving with 51 percent disapproving.

In a poll late last month, 43 percent approved while 50 percent disapproved.

Part of the stability in Trump’s rating is the deeply partisan nature of blame for the shutdown.

Only 12 percent of Trump’s 2016 voters say he deserves “a lot” of blame for the shutdown, compared with 92 percent of Clinton voters and 86 percent of Democrats.

There’s still more risk for him though, with independents saying by 44 percent to 29 percent that Trump is most to blame for the shutdown rather than Democrats in Congress.

10:15 a.m.: California Democrat plans to introduce articles of impeachment

Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) plans to introduce articles of impeachment against Trump on the opening day of the 116th Congress.

Sherman is accusing Trump of obstructing justice by firing former FBI director James B. Comey in 2017, among other alleged misdeeds.

“There is no reason it shouldn’t be before the Congress,” Sherman told the Los Angeles Times. “Every day, Donald Trump shows that leaving the White House would be good for our country.”

Sherman previously introduced articles of impeachment in 2017, when Republicans controlled the House.

Pelosi said in an interview broadcast Thursday that a decision about impeachment should be guided by a forthcoming report from special counsel Robert S. Mueller III.

“We have to wait and see what happens with the Mueller report,” Pelosi said. “We shouldn’t be impeaching for a political reason, and we shouldn’t avoid impeachment for a political reason. So we’ll just have to see how it comes.”

9:45 a.m.: Trump attributes shutdown to 2020 presidential politics

Trump went on Twitter hours before the new Congress convened to assert that the partial government shutdown was the result of Democratic posturing in advance of the 2020 presidential election.

“The Shutdown is only because of the 2020 Presidential Election,” Trump wrote. “The Democrats know they can’t win based on all of the achievements of ‘Trump,’ so they are going all out on the desperately needed Wall and Border Security — and Presidential Harassment. For them, strictly politics!”

“Presidential Harassment” is a term Trump has appropriated from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) meant to convey overly aggressive oversight of the administration.

9:15 a.m.: Quadriplegic lawmaker to preside over House on opening day

Pelosi has designated Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.), the first quadriplegic elected to Congress, to preside over debate on Thursday afternoon.

The move is intended to highlight what Democratic leaders say is a commitment to creating a more inclusive government.

Langevin, who has served in Congress since 2001, is co-chairman of the Bipartisan Disabilities Caucus.

“Together, we are proudly reaffirming a fundamental truth: that in our nation, we respect people for what they can do, not judge them for what they cannot do,” Pelosi said in a statement.

Her office noted that Langevin will use a podium lift system that was installed during Pelosi’s previous tenure as speaker.

7:45 a.m. Kellyanne Conway knocks Pelosi for insulting Trump

White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said Thursday that Pelosi showed “very poor form” in a television interview by insulting President Trump.

Conway was objecting to comments made by Pelosi about Trump’s relationships with women during an interview broadcast Thursday morning on NBC’s “Today” show.

“I don’t know if he knows how to deal with women in power and women with strength, but we’ll see,” Pelosi said. “Let’s hope for the best in that regard.”

Pelosi fills role as Trump’s sparring partner, respecting the office but not the man

Appearing on Fox News’s “Fox & Friends,” Conway noted that Trump has women as senior advisers in the White House and his Cabinet.

During the interview, Conway also knocked Democratic leaders for their refusal to meet Trump’s demand for more than $5 billion in border wall funding.

Conway said Democrats need to show “more seriousness of purpose” on the issue, which is at the center of a partial government shutdown.

“They don’t want to hear the facts and the figures,” she said. “They’re now turning a blind eye to the humanitarian crisis.”

7:30 a.m.: Pelosi says it might be possible to indict a sitting president

Pelosi said in an interview broadcast Thursday that she considers the question of whether a sitting president can be indicted an “open discussion.”

Her comments come as special counsel Robert S. Mueller III continues to investigate a range of issues stemming from Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, including possible coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign.

Under current Justice Department guidelines, presidents cannot be indicted while in office but can be charged with crimes after they leave the White House.

“I do not think that is conclusive, no I do not,” Pelosi said during an interview on NBC.

Pelosi said it is clear that a president can be indicted after leaving office. Pressed by NBC’s Savannah Guthrie as to whether a president could be indicted while in office, Pelosi said: “I think that is an open discussion in terms of the law.”

Legal scholars are divided on the issue.

During the interview, Pelosi also said that discussions about impeaching Trump should be guided by an anticipated report from Mueller.

“We have to wait and see what happens with the Mueller report,” she said. “We shouldn’t be impeaching for a political reason, and we shouldn’t avoid impeachment for a political reason. So we’ll just have to see how it comes.”

7:15 a.m.: Pelosi: ‘This is the Trump shutdown through and through’

Pelosi blamed Trump “through and through” for the partial government shutdown and said it’s a challenge to negotiate with him during an television interview broadcast Thursday.

Her comments come amid a funding dispute over Trump’s promised border wall that has shuttered about a quarter of the federal government.

“This is the Trump shutdown through and through,” Pelosi said on NBC. “There’s no escaping that for him. That doesn’t mean we take any joy in the fact that there is a Trump shutdown. We want government to open.”

Trump rejects a plan from Democrats to reopen key parts of the federal government

In the interview, which was recorded Wednesday, Pelosi said Democrats have “nothing to do” with the stalemate, saying it is the result of a “ridiculous” campaign promise by Trump.

“When you’re negotiating with someone, you have to know — you stipulate to some fact,” she added. “It’s hard to do that with the president because he resists science, evidence, data, truth. It’s hard to pin the president down on the facts.”

Pelosi also took aim at Trump for his assertion that Mexico would be paying for a border wall through savings achieved by a renegotiated trade deal.

“The president either doesn’t know what he’s talking about or doesn’t want to know what he’s talking about,” she said. “There’s no way that money from a trade agreement makes a profit that goes to pay for a wall.”

6 a.m.: Pelosi to call on House to address income disparity

Pelosi plans to call for “bold thinking” on income disparity as she lists priorities for the new Congress after taking the gavel as speaker on Thursday.

In excerpts of planned remarks released by her office, Pelosi says income disparity “is at the root of the crisis of confidence felt by so many Americans.”

“We must be champions of the middle class, and all those who aspire to it — because the middle class is the backbone of democracy,” she says.

In her remarks, Pelosi will also call on Congress to address climate change, calling that “a moral decision to be good stewards of God’s creation,” and advocate for lower prescription drug prices and investing in “green and modern infrastructure.”

Scott Clement, Mike DeBonis, Emily Guskin, Paul Kane, Sean Sullivan, Elise Viebeck and David Weigel contributed to this report.

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