WASHINGTON, Jan 11: US President Donald Trump said during a roundtable discussion on Friday that he is not considering declaring a national emergency to secure border wall funding at the moment, though he defended his right to do so in the future.
“What we’re not looking to do right now is national emergency,” Trump said. The president added he does not want to rush ahead with the emergency option, which would allow him to circumvent the Congress, although he insisted that he has the legal authority to go ahead with such a move.
Trump said he would instead prefer that lawmakers come to the table and “do its job” by voting on a funding bill. The partial government shutdown started on December 22 and is set to become the longest in US history on Saturday if an agreement is not reached.
The president and Democrats have been unable to reach a deal on a spending bill because of disagreements over funding for a wall along the US-Mexico border.
Trump is demanding over $5 billion for the barrier project, but Democrats have rejected the funding request, citing fiscal concerns and Trump’s repeated promises that Mexico would pay for the wall.