Senator Lindsey Graham said Trump was on board early last week with a tentative "compassionate" deal between Democrats and Republicans to guarantee the status of nearly 700,000 "Dreamers" -- people who came to the United States illegally as children and are now threatened with expulsion.
The deal would also provide some funding to start construction on a wall on the Mexican border, and move policy toward more merit-based immigration.
But at last Thursday's White House meeting on immigration with lawmakers, Trump made an about-face, rejecting a deal and, according to one official in the meeting, complaining about immigrants from "shithole" countries like El Salvador, Haiti and Africa.
"I think somebody on his staff gave him really bad advice from 10:00 to 12:00 on Thursday," Graham said.
"I don't think the president was well served by staff... We cannot do this with people in charge at the White House who have an irrational view of how to fix immigration."
"This has turned into an 's-show' and we need to get back to being a great country where Democrats and Republicans work together to do something that we should have done years ago."
The president's key advisors also include immigration hardliner Stephen Miller.
Graham said he would continue to press for a deal based on what had been tentatively agreed the Thursday meeting.
However, the failure of immigration talks, officials worry, will prevent a deal on government spending this week that could lead to a shutdown of much of the government.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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