"To be honest, it's not a wall", Mr Kelly said, adding the mix of technological enhancements and "steel slat" barriers the president now wants along the border resulted from conversations with law enforcement professionals on the ground.
"The president still says "wall.' Oftentimes frankly he'll say 'barrier" or 'fencing, ' now he's tended toward steel slats", Kelly said. The latter part is similar to what the Senate passed unanimously earlier in December, before the House rejected it to fund Trump's border wall.
"An all concrete Wall was NEVER ABANDONED, as has been reported by the media", the president said.
Democrats maintain that they have already presented the White House with three options to end the shutdown, none of which fund the wall, and insist that it's Trump's move. The so-called "Continuing Resolution" funding bill would keep the lights on at DHS only until February 8, 2019, and continue current funding of $1.3 billion for border security.
But, reacting to the news that a second migrant child died this month while in the custody of USA officials, Trump seemingly suggested that Border Patrol agents do, in fact, want a wall.
Graham had also gone to the White House to complain about Trump's abrupt decision to declare victory over ISIS and withdraw USA troops from Syria.
"Our negotiations are at an impasse at the moment", said Sen.
Lindsey Graham, who said he hoped to end the shutdown by offering Democrats incentives to get them to vote for wall funding.
Kevin McAleenan, the commissioner of US Customs and Border Protection, said on ABC's "This Week" that investment in Central America was one element of a "multi-faceted problem" that also requires funding border security.
Trump on Twitter criticized Democratic opposition to the wall project, which carries a total estimated price tag of US$23 billion.
Amidst the government shutdown over border security funding, Trump took to Twitter Saturday to accuse Democrats as being culpable in the death of two migrant children who have died in USA custody.
Maurizio Sarri gives his take on precarious situation surrounding Chelsea midfielder
In the future, he can play also as a winger, of course. "I like to change a lot, but we also have two great strikers". Hazard has continued to stall on a new Chelsea contract, with his current deal expiring in 2020.
But Kelly's comments were seemingly at odds with the president's tweet on Friday calling for "money to finish the wall", as well as his promises during and after the 2016 presidential campaign.
"Secretary (Kirstjen) Nielsen and I have directed that we do medical checks of children 17 and under as they come into our process", CBP Commissioner Kevin McAleenan told ABC News.
"This is the same president who repeatedly promised the American people that Mexico would pay for the wall that he plans to build", New York Rep. Hakeem Jeffries said on ABC's This Week program. The White House has dropped its request further to $2.5 billion, but Democrats are holding the line against funding the wall.
The Democrats' proposal would allow the debate over wall funding to continue without tying the rest of the government to it.
Her first order of business is expected to be passing a bill to fund the federal departments that are closed, without providing extra resources for Trump's border wall.
But someone should tell Trump a "wall" no longer appears to be in the plans.
But with Democrats taking control of the House of Representatives on Thursday, the chances of a deal being struck are likely to become even more distant.
Meanwhile, the president lays the blame for the shutdown at the feet of Democrats.
He reportedly suggested working with the Democrats on helping the young immigrants known as Dreamers. Sen. But the idea of clouding Pelosi's speakership only emboldens Trump, the officials said.
An estimated 380,000 federal employees in those departments have been furloughed and another 420,000 will have to work without pay.