In a White House press conference on Monday, President Trump took only two questions from U.S. reporters. But he made news with both of his answers.
Asked if his threat was serious to shut down the federal government if Congress does not approve his border security measures — which include the wall on the U.S.-Mexico border — Trump said it absolutely was.
“If we don’t get border security after many, many years of talk within the United States, I would have no problem doing a shutdown,” Trump said during a joint appearance with Italy’s prime minister. “It’s time we had proper border security.”
Trump, though, did not say there was any “red line,” and offered optimistically, “I’ll always leave room for negotiation.”
“I have no red line, unlike President Obama,” Trump said. “I just want great border security.”
Trump called existing U.S. laws a “laughingstock” and the “worst” in the world. While Congress is charged with coming up with a solution, Trump said he would “certainly be willing to close it down to get it done.”
On Iran, Trump said he’d be willing to meet without pre-conditions. Trump said he would meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani “any time they want to.”
“They want to meet, I’ll meet. Any time they want,” Trump said.
The president’s comments on Iran come just a week after he threatened leaders there.