"Here is the president. I don't know if he's talking to Jim or Tom or Nancy or Frank, but this is a president who claims to go talk to a federal worker who is glad the president is keeping him out of work. Watch this," Morning Joe's Joe Scarborough said.
"But many of those workers have said to me and communicated, 'Stay out until you get the funding for the wall. These federal workers want the wall. The only one that doesn't want the wall are the Democrats."
"Actually, as they said, two-thirds of Americans don't want Donald Trump's wall. Now he's claiming that federal workers want to stay out of work. What is Donald Trump going to face from his own Republican party when they come back into town for the New Year?" Scarborough said.
"It's gonna be interesting, Joe. It reminds me also of what Sarah Sanders said after James Comey got fired, that all these FBI agents were reaching out to the White House to thank the president for firing James Comey," Garrett Haake said. "This idea that there is this groundswell of low level federal workers reaching out to the White House to thank the president for some of these things that he is doing doesn't match up with anything that we know.
"I was at the White House these last two days and struck by how alone -- there's no system around the president for any of these things. The things that he said in that small, almost-news conference alone about giving out 115 miles of border fence, there is no one to say how they're going to do it, without Congress having appropriated now even a dime for the system, there's nothing to back up what the president is saying about these issues.
"When Congress comes back, this will be fascinating -- because you talk about the way, $5 billion is nickel and dime stuff, but there is no energy to fight for this among the Republican party, certainly not in the Senate. This is not the kind of thing that Mitch McConnell gets out of bed for and comes into fight for. There are people who want to have the big ideological fight. Mitch McConnell wants to leave the Congress with a more conservative country, more conservative judges. Building a physical structure in the desert is not that kind of thing and it will be difficulty to rally Republicans around at all, because the president has spent none of his political capital on it.
"It's a reminder, I think, a little bit, too, of how the president has in some degree failed to learn to work with the Congress that his own party controls. The stuff that he spent his political capital on is the Obamacare repeal, which never got off the ground and the tax cut which didn't jibe with anything he is selling on the campaign trail and now, at the eleventh hour, trying to jam the wall through and it's still not getting bought by his colleagues on the Hill because they don't feel the same energy he does to fight for it."
"Garrett, quickly, what incentive do Democrats have to give an inch on this? Do you hear any Democrats saying they should compromise any more?" Scarborough said.
"No, none at all on this. There's nothing to compromise for," Haake said.
"It wasn't that long ago we were talking about $25 billion in exchange for a deal on DACA and reforming the legal immigration system and that hasn't even been broached in this conversation. So no, there's no give-and-take here. This is essentially the president trying to have his way at the eleventh hour without offering anything. It's not a deal, it's a standoff, and Democrats feel like, okay, that's fine, we can wait until the start of January and put the ball more squarely in Mitch McConnell and the president's court.
"The only pressure that I hear Democrats getting is from the left, saying 'don't compromise on this.'"