Sarah Huckabee Sanders scrambles to explain away Trump's pining for a government shutdown

Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
(Image credit: Screenshot/Twitter/ABCPolitics)

On Tuesday, President Trump said that he'd "love to see" a government shutdown at week's end if Democrats and Republicans fail to agree on immigration legislation. In an all-too-familiar scene, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was forced to address and retract that claim during a press briefing only a few hours later.

"We are not advocating for the shutdown," Sanders said after she was asked about her boss' remarks. She quickly pivoted to blaming the minority party in Congress: "[A shutdown would be] the fault of the Democrats not being willing to do their jobs."

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"The president wants a long-term deal and he wants to get a deal on immigration," Sanders insisted. Earlier on Tuesday, the president said as much, but warned a group of lawmakers and law enforcement officials that it was unlikely to happen: "You can say what you want," he said. "We're not getting support from the Democrats on this legislation."

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On that claim, Trump is probably correct. Most Democrats are adamantly opposed to the immigration bill he has proposed, which would give DREAMers — undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children — a path to citizenship in exchange for funding the president's much desired but still unrealized border wall.

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