Pelosi, Schumer will give rebuttal to Trump's Oval Office address

Kirstjen Nielsen Mike Pence Jared Kushner Ja'Ron Smith

Each side accusing other of giving no ground on shutdown The Associated Press6 Jan 2019

No. 2 House Democratic leader Steny Hoyer of Maryland said Tuesday that he believes Trump does not have legal authority to declare a national emergency and unilaterally build a Southwest border wall.

As the government remains in limbo amid a battle over border security, Donald Trump has said he may declare a national emergency in order to divert federal funds toward his long-promised border wall between the USA and Mexico.

While top Democratic leaders once condemned illegal immigration and favored a border barrier, now they insist it is a wasteful proposal and even, in the estimation of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, "immoral". ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, Fox broadcasting, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network and MSNBC all said they would air the rebuttal.

Now Trump is just hours away from addressing the nation about the "crisis" at the southern border in a televised speech, leaving many to wonder if he will use the opportunity to announce a state of emergency.

All the major US television networks agreed to air Trump's speech.

"The case is fairly easy to make if people know the statistics", said the official, despite acknowledging Trump's critics are likely to dismiss at least some of the numbers in the speech as lacking context.

Serparate reporting from the Wall Street Journal suggests that Trump isn't going to declare a national emergency Tuesday night, a proposal he has floated as a reckless power grab to obtain funds for uild a border wall. Vice President Mike Pence said the White House counsel's office is looking at the idea. "Now it's time to fulfill some of those statements they've made", White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told Fox News Sunday. It is national security.

Dick Durbin speak to the media after meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump about ending the partial government shutdown, on January 4, 2019 in Washington, DC. It's not known if Trump will declare a national emergency on air.

A growing proportion of Americans blame Trump for the government shutdown, although Republicans mostly support his refusal to approve a budget that does not include funds for the wall, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Tuesday.

"It's two years in-it's also three months after an election whgere voters resoundingly rejected the president's narrative on immigration", said Kucinich.

In June, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) pointed out that in 2013, long before Trump was elected, every Senate Democrat supported a $40 billion funding effort to step up protection of the border, a proposal that would have provided funding to hire thousands of border agents and hundreds of miles of fencing.

Because of it, the government has been partially shut down since December 22 and hundreds of thousands of federal workers have either been furloughed or are working without pay.

While explaining his position, Morgan recalled the Secure Fence Act of 2006, which was initially created to "help protect the American people" and make U.S. borders "more secure", hinting that "the strategy has never changed".

Democrats are also working to sway some moderate and skeptical Republicans to abandon Trump on the wall.

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