President Donald Trump will address Americans from the White House on Saturday at 4 p.m. Eastern with a “major announcement” on the “humanitarian crisis” on the southern border.
The president alerted Americans Friday of the forthcoming announcement:
I will be making a major announcement concerning the Humanitarian Crisis on our Southern Border, and the Shutdown, tomorrow afternoon at 3 P.M., live from the @WhiteHouse.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 18, 2019
“Everybody knows by now that our southern border is a humanitarian crisis,” president Trump said in recorded remarks posted later Friday evening. “It’s also a national security crisis.” He called on involved parties to take the politics out of the process and “let’s get to work.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 19, 2019
He spoke of the decades of issues at the border and the many people who want to come into the United States. The president then turned to those who pose a threat, “We have criminals, we have gang members, we have human traffickers, we have drug smugglers, we don’t want them in our country.”
President Trump has said in recent weeks that he has considered declaring a national emergency to secure the southern border, but would rather it be included in a funding bill to reopen the government.
Congressional Democrats were about to leave on a 7-day foreign trip this week while the partial government shutdown continued. The president abruptly canceled the trip before they left the country. The trip would likely have ensured federal workers would miss a second paycheck.
President Trump visited the border on January 11 where he met with law enforcement and toured the area in McAllen, Texas.
“I’m not looking to call a national emergency,” he told reporters Monday. “This is so simple, you shouldn’t have to. Now, I have the absolute legal right to call it, but I’m not looking to do that because this is too simple.” He pointed to Democrat refusal to negotiate border security and barrier funding that would reopen the portion of the federal government shut down.”All they have to do is say, ‘We want border security.’ That automatically means a wall or a barrier.”
Before leaving the White House for Dover Air Force Base Saturday, the president told reporters asking about his afternoon announcement that he would be touching on the caravans coming up from Central America and “Mexico is not stopping them. I mean, Mexico seems unfortunately powerless to stop them.”
“Without a strong border, America is defenseless, vulnerable, and unprotected,” Trump said at the Pentagon Thursday. He added, “We need strong borders. We need strong barriers and walls. Nothing else is going to work. Everyone knows it…This should have been done many years ago.”