Trump address – live updates: President to make speech from Oval Office as he seeks to convince public over border wall funding – Trump Latest News

Trump address – live updates: President to make speech from Oval Office as he seeks to convince public over border wall funding – Trump Latest News
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Trump address – live updates: President to make speech from Oval Office as he seeks to convince public over border wall funding – Trump Latest News
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Trump address – live updates: President to make speech from Oval Office as he seeks to convince public over border wall funding – Trump Latest News

Trump address – live updates: President to make speech from Oval Office as he seeks to convince public over border wall funding – Trump Latest News

Donald Trump will appeal to the nation about the need for his border wall


Donald Trump will appeal to the nation about the need for his border wall

Donald Trump is set to tell the American people that the US is facing a “crisis” on its southern border during his first-ever prime time address from the Oval Office on Tuesday, as the US works through its eighteenth day of partial government shutdown.

With Congress pointedly refusing to provide funding for Mr Trump’s controversial border wall, the White House is considering declaring a state of national emergency that would allow the president to divert funds and use the military to begin building on the wall. After the prime time address, Mr Trump is scheduled to personally visit the border on Thursday.

Democrats have so far flat out rejected Mr Trump’s demand for $5.6bn (£4.4bn) to build the wall, and the budgetary showdown over that money has left 800,000 public sector staff either furloughed or working without pay until the issue is resolved.

California’s Joshua Tree National Park, which shuttered campgrounds due to sanitation and safety concerns as a result of the will temporarily close from Thursday, CNN said (Getty)


“The only person disgracing the office of the president is the president himself,” she said.

Rashida Tlaib, the recently sworn in congresswoman criticised by Trump for saying she wanted to ‘impeach the mother****er”, has appeared on CNN to defend her comment and reveal she’s backed a Democratic bill that would reopen parts of the government.

‘This border crisis is all Trump’s making, whether he says so or not’

Mr Trump did not inherit a border crisis from his predecessor, but he has managed to create one that suits his political needs, argues The Independent‘s Chris Stevenson.


Trump said former presidents told him they think the border wall is a good idea — they didn’t, but Pence has the president’s back anyway

Mr Pence leans in to listen to the president during an announcement at the White House


From the Associated Press:

Vice President Mike Pence says President Donald Trump’s recent claim that his predecessors endorsed his idea of a US-Mexico border wall was an “impression”.

Mr Trump said Friday that some previous presidents “have told me that we should have done it”.

The four living ex-presidents do not back Trump up on that claim. Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and George W Bush said they had not discussed the wall with Trump. Barack Obama’s office reiterated his opposition to the wall.

Mr Pence told NBC’s “Today” show on Tuesday, “I know the president has said that was his impression from previous presidents”.

Mr Pence says he’s seen “clips of previous presidents talking about the importance of border security and the importance of addressing illegal immigration”.

Mr Trump is scheduled to address the nation Tuesday night and lay out his case for the wall, which Democrats oppose. The government is in its third week of a partial shutdown over wall funding.

Trump will not be the only politician speaking tonight

Ms Pelosi, Mr Schumer, and other Democratic leaders outside of the White House after a recent meeting with the president regarding the government shutdown


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer will give a Democratic reubttal to President Donald Trump’s prime-time address from the Oval Office this evening , where he will discuss his proposal to build a wall along the US-Mexico border.

Ms Pelosi and Mr Schumer have so far led a unified Democratic front against Mr Trump’s request for $5.7bn in funding for a border wall, which Mr Trump has dug in on to result in the partial government shutdown.

Their response will come after Mr Trump’s planned remarks at 9pm EST.

National Parks are closing because, without staff, people are destroying things


The sign at the entrance to Joshua Tree National Park


Joshua Tree National Park in California was among those national parks that had been left open with a skeleton crew or volunteer staff, allowing visitors to experience the wonder of the desert park even as the government shutdown rumbles on.


But, after trees were destroyed by some visitors, and new roads being created by motorists in the desert, the park will now be closed, according to a national park spokesman.


“While the vast majority of those who visit Joshua Tree do so in a responsible manner, there have been incidents of new roads being created by motorists and the destruction of Joshua trees in recent days that have precipitated the closure,” spokesman George Land said in a news release.

Trump, to Democrats, is acting like a ‘terrorist’ in the shutdown showdown

It’s not just progressive darling and freshman Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who thinks the president is treating the hundreds of thousands of federal workers as a tool to forcibly extract concessions from his opponents — the Democratic establishment has come along to that way of thinking, too.


The Associated Press reports:


The second ranking House Democrat is blaming President Donald Trump for the partial government shutdown and has said that Mr Trump is holding the government “hostage.” That was Maryland Democrat Steny Hoyer, who said Tuesday that “in another context, we would call that an act of kidnapping or terrorism”.


Mr Hoyer said it would be akin to an imposition of martial law if Trump declares a national emergency in order to unilaterally build a Southwest border wall. He said Mr Trump doesn’t have that authority and doing that “certainly could” be an abuse of power.


Mr Hoyer compared it to other governments “declaring martial law and justifying them in doing whatever they want to do”.


Democrats are refusing to give Trump $5.7 billion to build the wall. The impasse has led to a partial government shutdown, now in its third week

The TSA union is warning of massive security risks as a result of the shutdown

The head of the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) — which is the largest federal union and represents some 44,000 Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents — says that the shutdown is having major impacts on federal employees.


“Some of [my members] have already quit and many are considering quitting the federal workforce because of this shutdown,” AFGE TSA Council President Hydrick Thomas said in a statement.


The statement continued: “The loss of officers, while we’re already shorthanded, will create a massive security risk for American travelers since we don’t have enough trainees in the pipeline or the ability to process new hires. Our TSOs already do an amazing job without the proper staffing levels, but if this keeps up there are problems that will arise – least of which would be increased wait times for travelers”.

Trump has lunch with TV hosts before his prime-time address Tuesday

From the Associated Press: President Donald Trump hosted cable and broadcast television news representatives at an off-the-record lunch hours before he’s set to deliver a prime-time speech outlining what he sees as a “crisis” on the southern border.


Top news personalities including CNN’s Chris Cuomo, Fox News Channel’s Bret Baier and ABC’s George Stephanopoulos attended the Tuesday lunch, which lasted about an hour and 20 minutes.


White House counselor Kellyanne Conway says the group had a “robust exchange” and “questions were asked and answered.”


Baier said on air that attendees agreed to quote only one line from the president: “It was wonderful having lunch with you today.”


But he said that the White House believes the wall is a winning issue for Trump, whose refusal to sign a budget without billions for the border has forced a partial government shutdown.

Is Trump’s safety imperiled by the shutdown?

While it is unlikely that the US Secret Service would allow their guard down in significant enough of a way that harm could come to the president, the agents in charge of keeping Mr Trump safe are only human.


And that means they could find themselves distracted should they be among those who do not receive checks as a part of the ongoing government shutdown, a former agent says.


“This is an incredibly stressful job that requires your full attention, and if you are standing there thinking about your mortgage, or your credit card bills, or the fact that you are burning through your savings, you are distracted, you not able to give 100 percent,” Donald Mihalek, a 20-year Secret Service agent whose retirement is pending because of the shutdown, has told The New York Times.

Top Trump administration officials see pay freeze as hundreds of thousands of government employees go without paychecks

Vice President Mike Pence, cabinet members, and other top level officials were scheduled to receive $10,000 raises, but the ongoing shutdown has forced a freeze in those efforts.


Workers across the federal government are waiting to see if they will even receive their paychecks, however, after the funding for part of the government lapsed nearly three weeks ago.

People are dying in America’s national parks during the shutdown

At least three people have died in America’s national parks since the shutdown began, with an estimated 80 per cent of the workforce that generally tends to the areas on furlough.


The deaths are notable because the Trump administration decided to keep the parks open but unstaffed during the shutdown, unlike during previous shutdowns when access to the areas was prohibited. Other issues in the parks have also popped up, with piles of rubbish piling up with nobody around to clean up after the visitors.

TSA agents are calling out sick from work, and things are not pretty at America’s airports

While the TSA doesn’t generally release specific data on the number of agents who call out sick on any given day, there is some indication that federal workers are not showing up to work now that their paychecks have been threatened.


That has led to long lines in busy airports like New York City’s Laguardia International and Dallas/Fort Worth International.


Meanwhile, the ongoing shutdown has pilots warning that the lapse in federal funding could impact passenger safety — and air traffic control trainings have been halted in an already under-staffed industry.

Extended shutdown could lead to evictions for low-income families

The Department of Housing and Urban Development is scrambling to help tenants who rely on rental assistance programmes to keep a roof over their head, asking landlords not to initiate evictions for tenants who rely on HUD funding including Section 8 vouchers and project-based rental assistance.


The Washington Post reports that HUD officials did not realize that the rental assistance funding would dry up on 1 January, leading to an effort to find emergency funds to keep people in their homes. That includes tapping into reserve founds and “scouring” for cash, according to that newspaper.


Rougly 95 per cent of the employees at the department have been furloughed since the partial government shutdown began just under three weeks ago. 


In addition to the lapse in funding for vouchers and rental assistance, basic HUD functions like building inspections have also been halted.

In some areas hit hard by hurricanes this past year, the shutdown is adding insult to injury

The sun sets on a wreckage-littered street after Hurricane Michael passed over Panama City, Florida on 10 October 2018


The partial government shutdown is impacting federal prison workers, who have been asked to continue coming to work even though their pay checks are not being cut amid the funding lapse in Washington.



Things haven only gotten worse now that those workers may not get a paycheck.


“You add a hurricane, and it’s just too much,” Mike Vinzant, 32, a guard and president of the local prison officers’ union in Marianna, told the newspaper.


Believe it or not, America is already in a state of emergency — 31 of them, actually

President Donald Trump is toying with the idea of declaring a state of emergency in order to divert funds and resources to build his wall, and while that may be somewhat unprecedented for a massive infrastructure like the president plans, the declaration itself is nothing new.


There are a total of 31 active emergency declarations in the US right now, with the oldest dating to the Carter administration, according to the Federal Register.

Trump is getting air time to talk about immigration and border security. Did the networks give Obama that time?

Among the day’s controversies are the decisions by America’s major networks — including heavyweights like CNN, NBC, MSNBC, CBS, and Fox News — to run Mr Trump’s first-ever prime time address from the Oval Office.


Mr Trump, who has frequently called news outlets “fake news” and toyed with calls for outright violence against the press, has sparked major debates within the networks about whether the president should even be allowed that sort of a platform. For some, the decision was a no-brainer (he is the president of the United States, after all), yet for others the decision appears to have come with a bit more consternation.


But, while Mr Trump is getting his air time — in spite of his repeated misleading our outright false claims about the situation — the predecessor he has so regularly denounced notably did not receive that same air time when making a major immigration announcement in 2014.


Before things get out of hand here: Yes, President Barack Obama was given time by the networks. But, he was notably denied that time when he announced that he was signing an executive order to expand the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Programme. 

Trump is flirting with an emergency declaration to build his wall — but how would that even work?

Since Mr Trump confirmed last week that he has been considering an emergency declaration in order to build his wall, questions have swirled about how, exactly, that might work.


Broadly speaking, an emergency declaration would allow the president to redirect the military and to divert personnel and government funds in the name of national defence.



But, we have seen little indicator beyond Mr Trump’s statements that he will try to use these powers. He has so far not told Republicans in Congress that he is going forward with the plan. And, should he invoke emergency powers, Democrats have already indicated that his actions will be met with a swift legal challenge — which could derail the efforts.

Left unsaid here is that we cannot know how the legal challenge would be seen in the courts, or how an emergency declaration would figure into re-opening the government. The whole shutdown has been predicated on Mr Trump’s claim that a wall is needed for national security. Take away that stumbling block, and it is anyone’s guess what happens from there.

Governors call for end to shutdown 

The National Governors Association, a nonpartisan coalition representing the 55 governors of US states and territories, has written a letter addressed to Republican and Democrat leaders calling for a swift resolution to the government shutdown.


“On behalf of the nation’s governors, we urge you to find a compromise and immediately end the partial government shutdown. A federal government shutdown is a failure in governance and a weight on our economy and the American people,” the letter states.


“A federal government shutdown should not be a negotiating tactic as disagreements are resolved. Governors stand united in telling the federal government to open the doors of currently shuttered agencies while you find a long-term, bipartisan compromise on the issues that currently divide Washington.”


“Approximately 800,000 federal employees in our states are working without pay or furloughed – impacting their ability to provide for their families, jeopardizing their credit, and potentially siphoning dollars from state economies.


“Due to the significantly reduced presence of federal park employees and security, our national parks are overflowing with trash, natural resources are endangered, and the safety of visitors is uncertain.


“Governors stand ready to help you navigate this situation and re-open the federal government.”

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All major US television networks have agreed to air Mr Trump’s speech, prompting Democrats, who say a wall would be expensive, inefficient and immoral, to seek equal time.

“Now that the television networks have decided to air the president’s address, which if his past statements are any indication will be full of malice and misinformation, Democrats must immediately be given equal airtime,” said a joint statement issued by house speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer. The two are set to speak outside Congress after Mr Trump’s speech.

Vice president Mike Pence said on Monday that administration officials and congressional staff discussed the border “crisis” in meetings over the weekend about how to break an impasse about funding and reopen the government.

“We made progress in establishing the fact that we do have a humanitarian and security crisis at our southern border. The president will address that as he speaks to the nation,” Mr Pence told reporters.

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