President Trump has reportedly told confidants he believes a government shutdown would benefit him politically. Citing sources who have spoken with him on the matter, The Washington Post on Thursday said the president’s private comments—which come ahead of a Dec. 8 spending deadline—are undermining talks between Democrats and Republicans over federal spending for the next few years. The president has reportedly shifted his focus to improving his image in recent days, stressing to advisers that the public must be reminded how tough he is on immigration and reiterating calls for border-wall funding. He has also reportedly asked friends how a government shutdown would affect him politically and said he would place all the blame on Democrats, a move seen as likely to bolster support among his base. House Republican leaders are expected to seek support from Democrats on Friday for a measure to extend government funding until Dec. 22, according to multiple White House aides cited in the report.