Trump vows to take back the House at NRCC dinner

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By: CBS News
April 2, 2019

President Trump said he is confident Republicans will retake the House in 2020 after losing control of the lower chamber in last year's midterm elections.

"You are the minority," Mr. Trump said in his address to the National Republican Congressional Committee's annual spring dinner. "That's not going to last long ... We're going to take the House back. I feel totally confident."

He also poked at former Vice President Joe Biden, who's been accused of overly familiar touching by two women. In an anecdote about a general whose name he said was "Raisin Cain," he told Republicans he had said, "Come here, General, give me a kiss. I felt like Joe Biden," he said, drawing laughter from the audience.

Mr. Trump also joked that Biden is "being taken care of pretty well by the socialists."

"I was going to call him," he said, adding, "I was going to say, 'Welcome to the world, Joe. You having a good time, Joe? Are you having a good time?'"

Mr. Trump also headlined the NRCC's annual spring dinner in 2018, which raised $32 million when Republicans were in power. Tuesday's dinner brought in $23 million. The organization is the GOP's campaign arm responsible for electing Republicans to the House.

The president spoke hours after railing against the U.S. immigration system and telling reporters that he wants to "get rid" of immigration judges who hear migrants' cases. At a meeting at the White House Tuesday, he also reiterated a threat to close the U.S.-Mexico border after a meeting, saying he stands ready to take drastic action if the country doesn't do more to curb illegal immigration.

"Security is more important to me than trade," Mr. Trump on Tuesday said when asked about the severe economic impact of closing the border. "We'll have a strong border or we'll have a closed border."

The president spoke after meeting in the Oval Office with Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary general of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Last week, Mr. Trump tweeted threats to close the border if Mexico doesn't do more to cooperate with the U.S. and slow the flow of migrants. But the commander-in-chief appeared to shift that timeline Tuesday, saying Mexico is assisting the U.S. more than it was even a few days ago. The president said he's still "totally prepared" to close the border if necessary.

Along with a list of frustrations over immigration, however, Mr. Trump included immigration judges. U.S. immigration court backlogs are at all-time highs, with not enough judges to adjudicate the cases. That problem was exacerbated by the government shutdown earlier this year.

"We need to get rid of chain migration, we need to get rid of catch and release and visa lottery, and we have to do something about asylum. And to be honest with you, have to get rid of judges," Mr. Trump said in his laundry list of frustrations.