President Donald Trump has said he told congressional leaders the partial government shutdown could go on for months or years but he has designated a team of negotiators to try and resolve the impasse.
The US government is in its 14th day of a partial government shutdown over Mr Trump’s insistence for funding of his proposed wall at the US-Mexico border.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer told reporters their nearly two-hour meeting with Mr Trump was “somewhat contentious”.
Mr Trump called it “productive.”
In the Rose Garden after the meeting on Friday, Mr Trump said he would not end up reopening the closed government agencies until he gets border security.
“We have to get a structure built,” he said.
Mr Trump said he has designated a team that will meet over the weekend with politicians to resolve the stand-off.
Mr Trump spoke after emerging from more than two hours of somewhat contentious talks with Democratic leaders in the House and Senate.
Vice President Mike Pence said there was a crisis at the border.
Mr Trump said that the official ports of entry are strong, but there are miles and miles of unprotected areas along the border where drug and people smugglers enter the United States.
He said the only way to stop it is to have a solid concrete or steel structure to close off the open areas.
On their first day in the majority, Democrats in the House of Representatives had passed a plan to reopen the US government without funding the wall.
The largely party-line votes came after Mr Trump made a surprise appearance at the White House briefing room pledging to keep up the fight for his signature campaign promise.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Mr Trump and Senate Republicans should “take yes for an answer” and approve the border bill, which was virtually identical to a plan the Senate adopted on a voice vote last month.
“We’re not doing a wall.
“Does anyone have any doubt that we’re not doing a wall?” Ms Pelosi told reporters at a news conference on Thursday night.
Ms Pelosi, who was elected speaker earlier on Thursday, also took a shot at Mr Trump, calling his proposal “a wall between reality and his constituents”.