Trump to travel to Southern border, considering prime-time address amid shutdown standoff
The White House lays out President Trump's priorities in a letter to the House Appropriations Committee as the shutdown continues in Washington; Kevin Corke reports.
President Trump will travel to the U.S.-Mexico border on Thursday in a bid to highlight border security, as he presses Democrats for wall funding amid the protracted standoff that triggered a partial government shutdown now stretching into its 17th day.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders tweeted the president’s travel plans on Monday.
“President @realDonaldTrump will travel to the Southern border on Thursday to meet with those on the frontlines of the national security and humanitarian crisis. More details will be announced soon,” Sanders tweeted.
The president’s visit will come on what will likely be the 20th day of the partial government shutdown. Numerous government agencies first ran out of funding on Dec. 22, as Democrats vowed to block Trump’s requested $5.7 billion to build the border wall and Trump insisted on the money.
Last week, House Democrats proposed a bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security, which oversees construction of the wall, at current levels through Feb. 8, with $1.3 billion for border security—a figure far less than Trump requested. Senate Republicans so far have not taken it up.
The president told congressional Democratic leaders during a meeting on Friday that he was willing to keep the government shutdown for as long as necessary -- possibly months or even years -- in order to get the funding he wants.
After a weekend filled with subsequent meetings about the shutdown, the president gave his strongest endorsement yet of a proposal to build a steel wall, rather than a concrete barrier, at the southern border.
Trump framed the pitch for a steel wall as a concession to Democrats to move negotiations along.
“They don’t like concrete, so we’ll give them steel,” Trump told reporters over the weekend.
But Democrats do not appear moved by the president's message.
Trump also suggested he would rather wait until the Supreme Court rules on the legality of his administration's pullback of the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program before negotiating with Democrats on the issue as part of the talks to end the shutdown.
Several federal judges have held that the Trump administration's reasons for terminating DACA were legally insufficient under a federal administrative law statute, which requires adequate notice and justification before the government terminates a right it has previously granted.
Fox News' Gregg Re contributed to this report.