Shelby said the president was “concerned” because the deal doesn’t give him “everything he wanted.”
The agreement struck on Monday night would fund roughly a quarter of the government through Sept. 30 and provide $1.375 billion for physical barriers along the border. Shelby added that the agreement would provide more than $22 billion on border security — a figure that appears to have resonated with the president.
Trump’s tweet signaled an openness to the agreement after telling reporters earlier in the day that he wasn’t “thrilled” with the deal.
Shelby added that he was urging Trump to evaluate the bill in the context that it’s “only a down payment.” He maintained that questions about whether Trump will sign the bill are “premature.”
“I’ve told him that, as I said a few minutes ago, that ‘Mr. President, we had a good reception in the caucus today about this and we know it’s multiyear, we know it’s going to cost a lot of money but it’s a good start,’ ” Shelby said.
Shelby’s meeting with Trump comes after Senate GOP leaders, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellScrambling to avoid a shutdown Negotiators aiming to reach deal on Monday night to avert shutdown McConnell: ‘Radical fringe’ added ‘poison pill’ to shutdown talks MORE (R-Ky.), were supportive of the agreement earlier Tuesday.
Sen. John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneHillicon Valley: Trump signs order to boost AI | Klobuchar lashes out at tech in 2020 launch | Bill would create cyber workforce exchange | Advocates call out Facebook before EU elections Bipartisan bill would create public-private cyber workforce exchange Will Senate GOP try to pass a budget this year? MORE (S.D.), the No. 2 Senate Republican, called the barrier money, which is significantly below the $5.7 billion Trump asked for during the previous 35-day shutdown, a “down payment” for the larger $25 billion Trump wants over several years.
McConnell also said he believes Trump should sign the agreement, saying the president “got a pretty good deal here.”