One week after allying himself with Democratic congressional leadership on efforts to raise the debt limit and provide money for hurricane relief, President Donald Trump will host the Senate and House Minority Leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi for dinner at the White House to discuss DACA and health care Wednesday night.
Trump’s newfound working relationship with Schumer and Pelosi comes at the chagrin of some Republicans who last week stood in opposition to the ultimately passed three-month deal to keep the government running. The president touted the bipartisan effort, despite defying a strategy backed by GOP leadership and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to push for a longer deal.
The focus of Wednesday’s dinner, according to sources familiar with the meeting, will be to discuss protections for so-called Dreamers, undocumented immigrants currently protected by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy, which the administration said last week it would end in six months. The trio will also talk about efforts to stabilize health care markets.
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The dinner will follow a bipartisan roundtable between a number of leading moderate House Democrats with Trump Wednesday afternoon.
Rep. Josh Gottheimer, D-N.J., a leader of the House Problem Solvers Caucus, said the White House legislative affairs office invited him and other members to discuss health care, tax reform and infrastructure Wednesday afternoon.
“I’m hoping this is part of a new era of bipartisanship. Because that’s what people want,” he said.
Rep. Tom Reed, R-N.Y., the other co-chair of the Problem Solvers Caucus, is among the Republicans invited to the session, his office confirmed.
The bipartisan meeting will take place at 2 p.m. in the White House Cabinet Room, according to the president’s schedule.
Gottheimer, who attended a bipartisan meeting at the White House last week on New York and New Jersey infrastructure projects, told reporters he wants to discuss the status of young undocumented immigrants with Trump, and push for a vote to address the expiring DACA policy.
“If there’s bipartisan support to get something done, let’s bring it to the floor and get legislation passed,” he said.
Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Texas, a co-chair of the Blue Dog Coalition, another group of moderate House Democrats, is also expected to attend the meeting.
Trump dined Tuesday night with several Republican and Democratic senators to discuss tax reform.