Trump threatens national emergency if wall demands not met

New Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 10 January 2019, 04:49 PM
 wall along the US-Mexico border was one of Trump's signature campaign promises
wall along the US-Mexico border was one of Trump's signature campaign promises

US President Donald Trump on Wednesday threatened to impose a national emergency which will empower him to go ahead with his plan to construct the wall along the Mexican border. "I have the absolute right to impose national emergency if I want," Trump said. US President threatened to impose the emergency it if the Democrats do not allocate USD 5.7 billion funding. He argued that the current situation, wherein people are entering the country illegally and there is massive smuggling of drugs, poses a national security threat. A wall along the US-Mexico border was one of Trump's signature campaign promises.

To a question, why he did not declare this option during his prime-time address to the nation on Tuesday night from the Oval Office, the president said, "Because I think we might work a deal and, if we don't, I may go that (national emergency) route."

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The Democrats are refusing to allocate the money, arguing that a wall would be costly and ineffective. Mexico has rejected Trump's demand to pay for the border wall.

"My threshold (for declaring a national emergency) will be if I can't make a deal with people that are unreasonable," Trump said.

Reiterating his stand after a luncheon meeting with Republican Congressional leaders at the Capitol Hill, the president said, "I may do that (declare a national emergency)."

Earlier, Trump walked out of a meeting with top Democratic leaders, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Senator Chuck Schumer, after they refused to allocate a whopping USD 5.7 billion funding for his controversial US-Mexico border wall plan. "Just left a meeting with Chuck and Nancy, a total waste of time. I asked what is going to happen in 30 days if I quickly open things up, are you going to approve Border Security which includes a Wall or Steel Barrier? Nancy said, NO. I said bye-bye, nothing else works (sic)!" a furious Trump tweeted. 

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The sharp differences between the Trump administration and the opposition Democrats over border security has resulted in a partial government shutdown, which entered its 19th day on Wednesday, making it the second-longest in history after the 21-day shutdown in 1995-96.

Earlier, Donald Trump had threatened to "entirely close" the Southern border with Mexico and change the immigration laws if the opposition Democrats did not agree to his demand of funding for a border wall.

First Published: Thursday, January 10, 2019 07:26 AM
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