Democratic leaders in the House and the Senate said that the United States does not govern by “temper tantrum” after U.S. President Donald Trump made his case for a wall along America’s border with Mexico.
Trump made his case for a border wall on Tuesday night, saying he’s called congressional leaders to the White House on Wednesday to “get this done,” and adding that it could all be resolved in a 45-minute meeting.
Coverage of Donald Trump’s demand for a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico on Globalnews.ca:
“My administration has presented Congress with a detailed proposal to secure the border and stop the criminal gangs, drug smugglers and human traffickers,” Trump said.
Developed by people at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Trump said the proposal includes requests for more agents, immigration judges and bed spaces to process what he called the “sharp rise in unlawful migration fueled by our strong economy.”
“We have asked Congress to close border security loopholes so that illegal immigrant children can be safely and humanely returned back home.”
The proposal also includes $5.7 billion in funding for a physical barrier along the southwest border.
Once called a wall, Trump said, “at the request of Democrats, it will be a steel barrier rather than a concrete wall.”
“It’s what our professionals at the border want and need — this is just common sense,” he said.
He said the $5.7 billion he’s requested would be paid for “indirectly” through a trade deal reached with Mexico and Canada — a claim that has been widely disputed.
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer each made their own TV address in response, with the latter saying that no president should “pound the table” to get his way.
“Women and children at the border are not a security threat, they are a humanitarian challenge,” Pelosi said.
A challenge, she added, that “Trump’s policies have only deepened.”
“Trump must stop holding the American people hostage, stop manufacturing a crisis and reopen the government,” Pelosi said.
Schumer echoed her comments, saying that “we don’t govern by temper tantrum,” and that “no president should pound the table to get his way.”
Schumer said Democrats agree that border security should be addressed, but added “we sharply disagree with the president about the most effective way to do it.”
“There is no challenge so great that our nation cannot rise to meet it,” Schumer said.
“Reopen the government, and we can work to resolve our differences over border security, but end this shutdown now.”