Transcript for Democratic leaders respond to Trump's prime-time address
Good evening. I appreciate the opportunity. To speak directly to the American people tonight about how we can and they shut down and meet the needs of the American people. Sadly. Much of what we heard from president come throughout this census shutdown has been full of misinformation. And even malice. The president has chosen fear. We went start with the facts. The fact is on their first day of this congress house Democrats passed senate Republican legislation. To re open government and fun Smart effective border security solutions. But the present rules rejecting these bipartisan bills which would reopen government. Over his obsession with what forcing American taxpayers. To waste billions of dollars on expensive and ineffective while. A wall he always promised Mexico would pay for. The fact is. President trump has chosen to hold hostage critical services that health safety and well being of the American people. And withhold paychecks of 800000. Innocent workers across the nation. Many of them veterans. He promised to keep government shut down for months or years and my only hurts that's just plain wrong. The fact is we all agree we need to secure our borders while honoring our values. We can build the infrastructure roads that our ports of entry we can install new technology to skin cars and trucks for drugs coming into our nation. But can hire the personnel we need to facilitate trade and immigration at the border with can find more innovation to detect unauthorized crossings. The fact is that women and children at the pleasure I'm not a security threat. They are humanitarian challenge a challenge that president Trump's own cool and counterproductive policies. Have only deepened. And the fact is present count must upholding American people hostage might stop manufacturing a crisis. I must reopen the government. Thank you. The issue month. Thank you speaker Pelosi. My fellow Americans we address you tonight for one reason only. The president of the United States having failed to get Mexico to pay for his ineffective unnecessary border wall. And unable to convince the congress or the American people to foot the bill. I shut down the government. American democracy doesn't work that way we don't governed by temper tantrum. No president should pound the table and demand he gets his way or else the government shut Stan. Hurting millions of Americans who are treated as leverage. Tonight. And throughout this debate and throughout his presidency. President trump has appeal to fear not facts. Division. Our unity. Make no mistake. Democrats and the president both warned stronger border security. However we sharply disagree with the president about the most effective way to do it. So how do we untangle this mess. Well there's an obvious solution. Separate the shut down from arguments over border security. There is bipartisan legislation supported by Democrats and Republicans. To reopen government. While allowing debate over border security to continue. There is no excuse. For hurting millions of Americans over a policy difference. Federal workers are about to miss a paycheck. Some families can't get a mortgage to buy a new home. Farmers and small businesses won't get loans they desperately need. Most presidents have used Oval Office addresses from noble purposes. This president just use the backdrop of the Oval Office to manufacture a crisis. Stoke fear. And divert attention from the turmoil in his administration. My fellow Americans. There's no challenge so great that our nation cannot rise to meet it. We can reopen the government and continue to work through disagreements over policy. We can secure our border with out an ineffective. Expensive wall. And we can welcome legal immigrants and refugees. Without compromising safety. And security. The symbol of America. Should be the statue of liberty not a thirty foot wall. So our suggestion. Is a simple. Mr. President. Reopen the government and we can work to resolve our differences over border security. But and this shut down now. I.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.