Posted by Steve Herman | 15 January 2019 | 1,079 times
Although a majority of Americans blame the U.S. president for the prolonged partial government shutdown, Donald Trump on Monday told farmers that the opposition Democrats in Congress are squarely responsible.
"They will not approve the measures we need to keep American safe," Trump told a national convention of farmers in New Orleans where he defended his demand for billions of dollars for a border wall with Mexico.
Drones and sensors are not adequate for border security, Trump added, contending only a "strong steel or concrete barrier" can prevent illegal immigrants from entering the United States.
"I will never ever back down" from efforts to keep America safe, Trump vowed in the speech to the 100th annual convention of the American Farm Bureau.
He accused Democrats of refusing to approve money for a wall because they want to use it as an issue for next year's presidential campaign when Trump faces re-election.
Six major polls show that half or more Americans hold the president and his Republican Party responsible for the shutdown. And 63 percent of American voters support a Democratic proposal to reopen parts of the government that do not involve border security while negotiating funding for a border wall, according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released Monday.
Earlier in the day, Trump told White House reporters he would not, at least for the moment, declare a national emergency to build the wall.
"I'm not going to do that," Trump said as he left the White House to speak to farmers in New Orleans.
About 800,000 federal workers are furloughed or working without pay during the record-long partial government shutdown which stretched into its 24th day Monday.
"We are open to resolution and negotiation," White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway told VOA News on Monday, indicating that communication is under way between the executive branch and Democrats, but she provided no details. (VOA)
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