President Donald Trump expressed during the Christmas season his willingness to visit the border, but the White House remains quiet about any plans.
The president said he wanted to highlight the border fence renovations already under construction as he continues to make the case for more border security.
“[Y]ou’ll see it because in January I’m going there,” Trump said to reporters on Christmas Day. “We’re almost having a groundbreaking – it’s such a big section. It’s probably the biggest section we’ll get out. So while we’re fighting over funding, we’re also building.”
A White House aide told Breitbart News that there is always a possibility that the president will visit the border in January but did not have specific guidance on the president’s future plans.
Trump faces a messaging war with Democrats over the government shutdown fight, as Democrats began the new year sounding the alarm on how the partial shutdown is hurting Americans and government employees.
The White House bargaining sessions with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have delivered few results, but the president continues to argue his case for border security. Trump spoke at length about the issue during a Rose Garden press conference with reporters on Friday and spoke to reporters twice on Sunday as he traveled to and from a staff meeting at Camp David.
As the fight heats up, the president still has two cards to play in the messaging war with Democrats.
Trump allies continue to press for the president to deliver an Oval Office address to the nation about the crisis at the border. A trip to the border would also demonstrate to Americans the need for more border security.
The White House is also exploring the idea of declaring a state of emergency on the border, which would allow Trump to shift funds immediately to the border. That decision would require a full-scale messaging war to make his case to the American public.