Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) said in a new interview she gets the sense during her negotiations with President Donald Trump that he would like to "abolish Congress."
Pelosi and congressional Democrats are at loggerheads with Trump's White House over funding for a southern border wall. The impasse over Trump's demand for $5 billion for the barrier, which he calls instrumental to border security, has forced a partial government shutdown that's lasted more than two weeks. Pelosi has said she will not budge on her position against it, calling the wall immoral.
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Trump told Democrats he was willing to keep the government partially shut down for months and even years over the wall.
"Are you recalibrating your assessment of how you can work with this president?" CBS host Jane Pauley asked.
"Our purpose in the meeting at the White House was to open up government," Pelosi said. "The impression you get from the president [is] that he would like to not only close government, build a wall, but also abolish Congress, so that the only voice that mattered was his own."
Abolishing Congress is not one of the checks and balances afforded to the Executive Branch by the U.S. Constitution.
Pelosi was featured on "Sunday Morning" on CBS in the latest of several flattering profiles of the newly elected speaker. It's Pelosi's second tenure in the role, after having previously held the gavel from 2007 to 2011.