In what is perhaps an early glimpse at the Democratic party’s forthcoming political foothold against the president, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi directly challenged Donald Trump when meeting with him on Tuesday.

Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer met with Trump and Vice President Mike Pence at the White House for a televised meeting that lasted for 17 minutes. Trump’s primary focus during the meeting largely revolved around his border wall, with Pelosi and Schumer suggesting a continuing resolution that would account for $1.3 billion for border security. However, Trump was disinterested in it, desiring more money for his border wall and threatening a government shutdown if he fails to get it.

While the two parties left at something of a standoff, Pelosi and Schumer did achieve one significant thing: convincing the president to own a government shutdown, which Pelosi had branded a “Trump shutdown” near the beginning of the event. “I am proud to shut down the government for border security,” Trump said to them later. “I will take the mantle. I will be the one to shut it down, I’m not going to blame you for it.”



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A few hours after she left the Oval Office, Pelosi met with House Democrats to discuss her success during the meeting. She joked how Trump’s investment in his wall is a “manhood thing” for him, adding, “As if manhood could ever be associated with him. This wall thing.” She also addressed how she successfully goaded Trump into accepting responsibility for a government shutdown. “The fact is, we did get him to say, to fully own that the shutdown was his,” Pelosi told her fellow House Democrats. “That was an accomplishment.”

Neither Pelosi nor Schumer knew their meeting with Trump would be televised or that Pence would be present for it. Both leading Democrats had met the previous evening to discuss what their talking points with Trump would be, although convincing him to own a government shutdown as his was not initially part of their plan.

One of her aides praised her talents to Vox, claiming, “She’s meticulous. She’s always prepared. When we prepare her for something, she does not want to know the minimum, she wants to know the maximum.” Continuing, the aide added, “In a public situation like that she can keep going, because she knows everything and [Trump] doesn’t.” Trump, meanwhile, reportedly “stormed out” of the meeting in frustration.

All 17 minutes of Trump’s meeting with Schumer and Pelosi can be seen below:

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