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Nancy Pelosi snaps at Kellyanne Conway after tense White House meeting with Trump

Emma Newburger
U.S. Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks to members of the media after a House Democrats meeting at the Capitol May 22, 2019 in Washington, DC.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi snapped at White House counselor Kellyanne Conway after a tense, aborted meeting on infrastructure Wednesday.

"I don't talk to staff. I talk directly to the president," Pelosi said after Conway asked her a question, according to a senior administration official who was in the room.

Later, a Pelosi staffer told CNBC that the speaker had said something different. "I'm responding to the president, not staff," Pelosi said, according to her deputy chief of staff, Drew Hammill.

The interaction followed President Donald Trump's abrupt exit from a meeting with Democratic congressional leaders.

Pelosi earlier in the day accused the president of engaging in a "cover-up" by blocking White House aides from providing testimony and responding to document requests from congressional investigations.

The president responded by saying he doesn't "do cover-ups" and that he could not work with Democrats on legislation until they stopped investigating him.

In a last-minute press event at the Rose Garden, Trump said he "walked into the room and I told Sen. Schumer and Speaker Pelosi, 'I want to do infrastructure' ... but we can't do it under these circumstances."

Democratic leaders said they were ready to make a deal on a $2 trillion plan to rebuild the country's infrastructure, including roads, bridges and airports.

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