Sarah Huckabee Sanders: believer & mom in White House

Dana Milbank: What on Earth does President Trump want?

President Donald Trump seemed open to the idea of giving undocumented immigrants a path to citizenship, albeit a long path.

Democrats want protections for some 800,000 immigrants brought to the US illegally as children.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., agreed in negotiations with the president last Friday to funding for a border wall but withdrew the offer following a backlash from Democrats.

With the USA now on day three of a federal shutdown, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders disputed any notion that President Donald Trump is not being clear about what he wants in any deal to reopen the government.

The White House announced it will release a bipartisan framework for an immigration plan this Monday.

As Trump watched the weekend machinations over reopening the government from his third-floor perch at the White House, he repeatedly told aides that he wanted to be more involved in discussions.

"And the President wants to lead on this issue, and that's exactly what we're going to do", Sanders said Wednesday.

Trump said the administration is talking about a long-term plan for about 800 miles of wall, but not in areas already guarded by mountains, large bodies of water, and rough terrain.

"Cryin' Chuck Schumer fully understands, especially after his humiliating defeat, that if there is no Wall, there is no DACA", Trump tweeted shortly before midnight Tuesday.

Although Sanders is the third woman to hold the title of White House press secretary, she is the first who is also a mom.

Graham was part of a bipartisan group of three dozen senators who met on Wednesday on Capitol Hill to discuss moving forward on immigration legislation.

With Trump stating no wall, no DACA, and Schumer's Democrats' new redline being zero funding for a wall, the framework appears to face an impasse on arrival. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Durbin to serve as a clearinghouse and sort out the parameters and timetable for the debate.

But immediately after Trump spoke, a senior White House official cast doubt on Trump's assurances, saying a pathway to citizenship for so-called Dreamers was "maybe" an option.

Sen. Lindsay Graham, R-S.C., said in a statement that he was "extremely pleased with the number of senators - from both sides of the aisle" - who had accepted his invitation.

Trump said he would also suggest US$5 billion for border security and would seek to curb family sponsorship of immigrants and the visa lottery system in his framework. Both senators are the deputy leaders of their respective parties and sit on a Senate Judiciary Committee subcommittee on immigration policy. "I wasn't in the room", Sanders said, before adding, "the president and Andrew McCabe have had limited and pretty non-substantive conversations".

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