Shutdown watch, day 16: Trump steels himself for a fight
On day 16 of the partial government shutdown, President Trump tweeted that Vice President Mike Pence's meeting on Sunday with Democratic congressional representatives had been "productive," announcing that his administration is now "planning a Steel Barrier rather than concrete."
The big picture: Trump's tweet echoes a concession first offered by acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney on NBC's "Meet the Press" — and floated by Trump in another tweet last month. But a Democratic official familiar with the meeting blasted Trump's take, saying that it started 45 minutes late after administration officials were unprepared to justify the $5.7 billion they've requested for the wall, though the Washington Post reported that the White House drafted a letter that more specifically outlined the administration's proposals, including $800 million for "urgent humanitarian needs." The official added that no progress had been made — and no other meetings of the group had been scheduled.