Dem Rep: Outside Pressures, Including Left-Wing Organizations, Make It 'Very Difficult' to Compromise

February 10, 2019

Rep. John Yarmuth (D., Ky.) said on Sunday that outside influences like left-wing organizations make it very difficult for Democrats and Republicans to compromise on border security and immigration.

"Both you and Congressman Graves were up at Camp David with the White House chief of staff yesterday trying to talk about ways that you all can bridge the differences between parties, which seem so deep. And you certainly saw that on display on Tuesday night. Do you see any prospect for that right now?" ABC's "This Week" host George Stephanopoulos asked.

"You know, if Tom and I and the group that was up at Camp David, including Mick Mulvaney, were left to our own devices, we would have solved it in less than a day," Yarmuth said.

He said that conflicting, uncompromising influences make it "very, very difficult" to make a deal.

"The problem is ... we have people of good will and intelligence and thoughtfulness who actually can negotiate all these things very easily, but then the outside world intervenes," Yarmuth said. "And again it's not just President Trump or Nancy Pelosi. It's also, you know, the right-wing media, left-wing organizations. We have so many outside pressures that make it very, very difficult for us to come to a logical compromise, and then sell it. And I don't know the answer to that, but we could have gotten it done this weekend."

For over a month, President Donald Trump and Congress were in a standoff over funding for Trump's proposed wall along the southern border. The standoff resulted in a partial government shutdown that ended Jan. 25 after Trump announced a deal that would fund the government for three weeks while a bipartisan conference committee works on a deal. A group of Republican and Democratic lawmakers are in the midst of negotiating a deal that would fund border security and avoid another government shutdown.

The Washington Post reports that negotiators are closing in on a deal that would provide no more than $2 billion for physical barriers along the border. Trump has asked for $5.7 billion for his border wall, making it unclear if Trump would accept anything less. Liberal groups have pressured Democrats to oppose any funding for a border wall. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) appeared to align with liberal groups when she said she would provide only $1 for a border wall. She called the wall "immoral."

The president has hinted that if Congress doesn't provide adequate funding for his wall, he would declare a national emergency and build the wall using funds from the military.