Trump prepared to keep government closed for border wall

President Trump spoke to reporters after meeting with congressional leaders on the government shutdown, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren kicks off presidential campaigning in Iowa this weekend.
23:50 | 01/04/19

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Transcript for Trump prepared to keep government closed for border wall
And. I want to the breaking Arum on this Friday eight days. Fourteen under government partial government shutdown hearing 2019. Pretend Johnson tissue with us our White House investigative producer. Jordan props wearhouse reporter and great to have you with us here to close out the week of her new Z. Day 700 what is a 713 of the trump presidency. Rumors are really matter where they're long let out guidelines there that's 1715 Euro oddly in government shut down congress is leaving town again we know Jordan this thing is gonna drag into at least. Tuesday so this federal workers gonna go into the weekend. I gambled that anxiety deepening over when the cylinder was. Yep the president confirming why we heard from Schumer that he said he's willing to keep this close down for months even a year they said he hopes it doesn't have to. We know at least it's gonna go into the weekend with vice president Penn's leading those negotiations but added. The wonder his credibility is undermined here because the president has Arnie undercut him once. He did indeed it undercut him appeared with him in the Rose Garden just a short time ago we'll dig into everything the president had to say just held an impromptu. Press conference there he did announces Jordan said a working group to meet over the weekend or perhaps hash out some kind of a deal. Our team just caught up with senate majority leader Mitch McConnell who wasn't in the Rose Garden with the president but we caught him up on Capitol Hill. He gave us a little insight into what's gonna happen this weekend take a listen. President agreed yeah tall people. Today. All the leader stuff this week. See if we can come home agreement to recommend. Earth. Leaders. The government couldn't reopen Tuesday anyway. We'll people here vote. Definitely isn't hurting in the something. No road leaders. Britney. We'll have published a working group. People who know both of us. As for a senior congressional correspondent Mary Bruce has been up on the hill all week. Reporting on this merry what's your sense of where things stand as we going to the weekend the president sort of sending mixed signals he said he's prepared to see the shut down. Last potentially months or years. But then you have Mitch McConnell signaling perhaps there could be some progress this weekend if we're if they get a working group together. It lives hope months and even years is not actually with gonna happen here guys certainly no one here on Capitol Hill want that to happen. But their investing NBA difference of opinion about where things stand right now because they were such similar responses from from the two parties out of this latest White House meeting you have the president. Of course and Republican leader saying his with a constructive meeting suggesting that there was some progress made. In the dialogue while you have the Democrats saying that bed bed that this is the contentious sit down and while the president and Mitch McConnell there are saying that there's this new working group the president putting his top folks. On this panel that's going to be coming down. Meeting with the leadership's after the weekend to continue the conversation while democratic sources that I've talked Tuesday. That's not quite the case may they dispute that they say look this is just continuing a conversation that was already ongoing it essentially there is nothing new here which means a DeVon not only can they not agreed. On any kind of a deal to reopen the government they can't even really agree on the parameters of their current discussion. The one silver lining is that at least we know that they are talking the staffs are talking about whether that means a there's any movement towards actual compromise. Am right now it doesn't look like that's happening. Yet marriage and before we let you go you have been sort of used to route running around trying to find if there's been any movement on the actual number here. That's the sticking point novice and amount of funding in the Democrats and Republicans can agree on for some sort of a border wall has there been any indication from anywhere. That it had the Democrats are willing to give a little Republicans are willing to give on the number of. Well Nancy Pelosi does say she is willing to put some money towards a border Walt to take to get one dollar. Nothing that's 61 box arts I had I don't think that's really got excited about what the president said he's not budging he wants five point six billion dollars he has said that repeatedly and despite the fact that that. There was talk earlier of bringing that number down into the choose that was and I get a thank you floated by the vice president himself the president has said no that's not gonna fly he wants five point six. Democrats are making very clear. They are not going to give the president his while they say reopen the government first then they can continue to have that conversation but again as we've seen so many times through the various iterations of this debate a lot of it comes down to how you define that wallet which are now border security awhile fencing steel slats. Whatever it is right now Democrats don't want to give the president the billions that he wants which means that we are shut down and talks continue throughout the weekend. All right mayor Chris thank you so much much more reporting from new coming up at 8 PM eastern time here on ABC news live on this prime. Speaking of Democrats they came out of the west wing just before the president took the podium and gave their take on the meeting here's Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. On what they thought just went down hitless. Afternoon weekend. Completed a lengthy and sometimes. Contentious conversation with the president. We have community that we will continue our conversation. But we all recognized week recognized. The democratic side that was really cannot resolve this until we open got and he made that very thing here. To the president services are being withheld from the American people. Paychecks are being withheld from people. Serve the needs of the American people and our border security. If we do not resolve this issue. Bottom line is very recently made a pleaded the president once again. Don't hold millions of Americans. And hundreds of thousands of workers hostage open up the government and let's continue the discussion. And let's bring in our senior national correspondent Terry Moran who's at the White House he was there for that. Will be press availability also in the Rose Garden where the president Terry. I'm it. Group of reporters put to the president that very line from Chuck Schumer Nancy Pelosi they said why don't you just reopen the government. And sort out the immigration debate a little later on the president made very clear though he sees this as a crisis and is not giving up that point a leverage. That's right. Given he said that he wanted didn't want to do things piecemeal. Although since much of the government has already been funded piecemeal as are just being more pieces. But it's clear he wants to use this show down to all over the over the wall. As the means as the new 01 hour to get this thing done which has been a priority for him of course since the campaign. So yeah he said essentially no I won't open those parts of the government that had nothing to do it border security. Because I want to use to me didn't say it like that but he said. He didn't want to do this piecemeal that this is too important he said to the nation. And clearly to him. To do any half measure he's going to use this moment this crisis in order to get what he wants. GU Terry when you asked him whether he's considering any alternatives to getting money from congress. He seems in that he actually signal that he actually was thinking of some alternate strategies here. Well I asked him point. Blank are you considering using emergency powers to grant yourself authority under the law to build a wall without congressional approval he says yeah. I am considering that and I can do it I may do it he said. I said is that a threat and you know you can see his answer it is it is a remarkable moment pitchers you just how vast president trump views his authorities under the law. Story termer enforces the White House thanks Terry much more from you coming up on world news as well 8 PM here on ABC news live thanks to Terry. John you actually had that reporting just before the president took the Rose Garden to the Rose Garden today that the White House is actively. Discussing declaring a national emergency yeah. So that they can go around congress and or build a wall and. I have also normal avenue and Martin reporting from me Catherine folders and those of McLaughlin on our teams of the last couple days we've been speaking to sources in the White House and around the president. And what they've been telling Haas is the presence actually been asking people what are my options what can I do here. I mean the wall as Jordan I'm will come from covering the campaign to build the wall was something we heard every day in the mid terms the signs have now changed to finish the wall so convenient they need something here's the present exploring his options has been told he declare a state of emergency which would allow him access to funds within the Department of Defense he can build the wall are about 5% of the border it's a 115 miles out of the 2000 wall border wall that is property owned by the Department of Defense. Advisors are telling him he can easily do this now experts we spoke to an even a former member of his administration Tom sponsored say meaning not. There's a little bit a stalemate here because congress could take legal action to stop the president but I think what we're seeing. Here I think you see that today from the reaction from Democrats and speaker Pelosi. You know he needs some option here to work and he's looking at every available method to do it we know there have been meetings of the White House over the last couple days and our understanding from all of our sourcing is that they're going to be having meetings through next week. We don't see a deal coming city wanna have a viable option to presented an arrest. Is looking for some way to declare victory even in the small essentially clear your reporting is that the government interviewed the administration is looking at building a wall. On government owned lands. Robin of course going to homeowners thorny patches and started confiscating pot calling. Well be eminent domain which were not try and outright what we're talking about is the state of emergency that would open up pre existing funds that have already been allocated to the department defense. Apply in his state of emergency president to reallocate them however he sees fit in his case to build his law. In theory of course we're already hearing blow back from Democrats on Capitol Hill they say that legal experts tell them that would be illegal they're promising to challenge that. I want to bring in now ABC news contributor John calling Houston a former official at the Department of Homeland Security address space got John great to see you. Also give us your take on this breaking news out of the White House that they are now considering. Declaring a national state of emergency to used defense funds to build the walls that something you think as a viable option. Well it would be a stretch I mean that. The president does not power. And periods major disaster. Insurrection. In Asia and declare. A national emergency time and assume greater powers but key element of him being of India has yet to be able to demonstrate. That. Normal government powers typical government powers are insufficient to address the threat addressed the conditions. Continue to be very hard pressed in the case of the conditions the board are such that our Border Patrol and other federal law enforcement organizations. Aren't able to handle it. Let's get into orbit more John. You know you hear me you've also closer look to those figures of immigration today the president sent a letter. To members of congress detailing why this is a crisis why this is a national emergency and among those statistics are presenting. They're saying they're 10171000. Criminals have been apprehended. They say suspected terrorists have been apprehended. Record numbers 280%. Increase in families showing up at the border. Is there any validity to their argument that we have reached a crisis stage at the border. I got involved in homeland security and law enforcement for 32 class shares and a lot of times and spent working on law enforcement. In other securities issues at the border. And quite frankly looking at the information that was provided to congress. And information provided by the president today's briefing. I am amazed that this is coming out of the White House I don't know where he's getting its and his information. But it's inaccurate for example. Yeah he stated to present stated that drugs aren't coming in through the ports industry primarily. According to the Drug Enforcement Administration that is a primary way. In which cocaine marijuana. And other illegal drugs are coming in from the south. They also come through victory in transit zone the Atlantic and Pacific so they'll Langlois is not gonna stop drugs flowing into the court's administrative duties of the citizens we also heard the secretary suggests that close at 3000 terrorists had been. Known or suspected terrorists have been apprehended at the border I hi I question not as well she used the term special interest alien. He special interest alien refers to somebody whose original citizenship. Our place of birth is one of 35 countries by suggesting it just because somebody. Was to contact a lot of southern border and their country or birth. What's one of these 35 countries is a far cry from saying. That this person is known or suspected terrorists. Last year that's what you are seventeen. DH asks him into contact with. Approximately 2500. People who were on our terrorist screening database watch list that means that there was information. Concern. Within the federal government suggest that there's a possibility that person may be related to terrorism. Over 2100 of those people try to fly into this country. Only 300 of those people. Were contacted along the southern or northern border Cella. Who really sort of collapsed by the information that's being provided by the administration as he tried to frame. The borders being out of control. And and high indebtedness. I Jon Cohen ABC news contributor former DHS official John great to see you today rather than just having on the phone thanks so much. And guys as we've been saying no it is jobless saying. A lot of these figures are misleading we need to remind people most. Undocumented immigrants in this company you country cut came here illegally they came through airports they didn't crawl across the border all by the administration's own statistics is totally gets obscured in this debate. About the silly. Dining you also can remember think about what we sore yesterday right the president coming in. To the press briefing room which we've never seen flanked by people that he says have seen on the front lines priests heard their testimony. Very compelling individuals I mean this is obviously a very tense situation what's happening. Right and very little attention Jordan being paid to the workers here it's been not gone unnoticed in this town. The contrast in perhaps there's an empathy gap coming out of this White House towards the net hundreds of thousands of federal workers who are. Facing financial pain here the president today said he's proud. To see them go without pay in fact it could potentially administration officials receiving 101000 dollar raises. During this period without paying. That that is not sitting well a lot of people. Absolutely the president was asked about that comment he made in December that he would be proud to shut down the government the president saying he's very proud of what he's doing but he doesn't Cullinan shut down but you're writing pointing out that the president hasn't been talking about I was 800000 barrel employees. Who have really been feeling this their pocketbooks. And the issue there is that the president doesn't show that infant in past presidents. I'm have really tried to play that up you know they say how about all these federal workers it's not fair to them it's curious that the president hasn't also take. Are we caught up with a good number of them in fact today are Erica Kane. And general Weinstein went up to northwest DC hearing caught up with ELL Rosenfeld she's a contract worker in USA ID who. Will not get back pain if congress at reopens a government acts to do that instead she's got a paycheck now facing a lot of anxiety here's her story can listen. Now we're getting to the critical point where something's gotta give me and I got to go back to work soon. As a contractor I will not get back pay when we go back to work so. All the days and I'm not working I will not be compensated for that we have enough savings. To pay next month's rent if it goes that far. After that happened to yeah. I feel. Shaft at. It's not my site this is not my squabble. I don't understand why I have to bear the brunt of the squabble. I don't think anyone's paying attention to the plight of the contractors. I feel extremely let down by the people in charge that this is suddenly my. Burden to bear I went back to grad school and got this job hoping for stability and yet. Here yeah. Are too much anxiety the new congress. Taking all of that on Democrats to it took some action last night but it was rejected in the senate meanwhile Jordan. Democrats in passing their first piece of signature legislation today HR one it's a transparency bill among other things. Requiring tax returns for any presidential candidate ten years' worth. To be presented that's a no go with Republicans actually this is really symbolic gesture on behalf of the Democrats showing what they would like to do now that they have control of congress but. Little evidence that is getting an end the I word is starting to get dropped around in this democratic house as well in fact one. New democratic congressman. Congresswoman receded to leave a Michigan got an a little bit hot water last night. I would she reportedly told a group of liberal activists from she said that. Was firing them up last night after the swearing in said that we're gonna kind of go I had an impeach this. Expletive as she referred to the president of the United States when that drew a pretty sharp response today from the president himself. Here's what he had to say. Italy and does her comments were disgraceful. This is a person that I don't know I assume she's new. I think she. Dishonored herself and I think she dishonored her family using language like that. In front of her son. And whoever else was there. I thought that was a great dishonor to her and to her family I thought it was highly disrespectful. To the United States of America. Some like he's never used any salty language or offensive remarks to refer to. Other members of congress but. He he may have a point yeah Democrats and of add absolutely the problem here is that this is not the road democratic leadership wants to go to our close he assured the president again in this meaning that she's not looking to impeach him and take a listen to what she had to say on holiday. I'm coming in a generational reaction to list. But in any event and none and censorship business. I do think members want to speak out against. Up call for civility on both sides and we disagreed with Barack Obama was on the policies. We didn't get into that kind of name calling when people set things up when appropriate we call them now. The most he's got her first test and it happened on day one. How was she gonna stand up to the most radical left elements of her party. When they become on here. It's regarding devolved into name calling Jordan perhaps doesn't bode well for the new congress but. It does it again as it does have that the challenge Nancy Pelosi has with these younger more diverse members who are really. Eager to end here to some of the norms that have that he dictated decorum in in the house and the senate for some time. Absolutely this is an impassioned snoop group they want to push the party forward at the same time close he has that. History she was there from the Clinton impeachment she knows that this can backfire on the party that goes app. And they all pose for a picture today out there in front of the capitol dome the freshman class is wrapping up the week of festivities to honor them meanwhile. Some presidential hopefuls looking to be the new fresh face in the White House since 1 each morning are already beginning to make trips to Iowa a number of Democrats have declared and spending time there. This is the first weekend and Elizabeth Warren senator of Massachusetts is making her way to Iowa we'll see a lot more per there. That's Marsha and hands let is right now she's in Council Bluffs, Iowa getting ready to travel around party on the campaign trail in Iowa. I shy and give us a preview of what senator Warren has in store for tonight in the rest of the weekend and her maiden voyage as a candidate in Iowa. Yeah we will be following her up and it cost the state she has five trips planned. Over the course of Friday Saturday and Sunday can down. It's that her first appearance since announcing her 20/20 exploratory committee she's obviously the first very high profile figure to announce such a move towards the 23 presidency and here she is the first event is gaining Council Bluffs, Iowa where and in just a few hours and down. No coincidence Iowa is the first state or we're Woolsey and major presidential contest for 23. That's going to be and they weren't you know you'll be on the beat all the way through sand has looked thank you so much and I keep their reporting coming much more from Chan on BBC news app downloaded if you don't have it. And you know this visit to Iowa Jordan is not going on notice president trump is already pouncing he sees this is game on. And drawing some fire for so offensive tweets. Absolutely where still 669. Days away from the twenties by election and it's never too early president comes. Playbook to go after his finals. In this case heat treated out this. What some are calling a racially offensive tweet saying warm once when he twentieth he's making a reference there warns claim to name American Heritage the president also of course often uses that racial slur in referring to weren't as Pocahontas. And so you know it's Marty is heating up in the president not afraid and. And we'll see if his argument evolves it all against some of the policy proposals she's putting forward some in the challenges she has not been afraid. Back to back down so we'll see if that fight escalates over the weekend as she. Steps into the spotlight finally to close out the weaker in a briefing room some good economic news after quite a roller coaster of a week on Wall Street. Fox take a look at the numbers today is the Dow closes up big to close the week. For look at the board from Wall Street today reacting investors reacting to this number. 312. Jobs in added in now to the economy in December that beat economists' expectations which was. A very good thing something the president took some credit for today. And also Jordan the Federal Reserve Chairman was out today and also seem to calm people's nerves he. Had a pretty interest in comment when asked how he would react to president trump if they had to meet face to face. President trump asked him to resign Nicholas. This possible discussion of a face to face meeting between you and president. If invited would you would you accept that some inflation to remain so again I have no news on that nothing's been scheduled. I would say that meetings between presidents and frontiers do happen and they they've happened I think I can figure it pitchers who didn't eventually meet with president but again nothing nothing has been scheduled really. It's prison masters resigned would you do it. No. And then the market started to go up against seven's good news for those of us with for when cases were close up and we thank you for joining us here in the briefing room. After this while the historic week we'll be back on money 3:30 eastern time download the ABC news after follow us all weekend long retired Jordan talks with us. See you back here on Monday in a briefing here.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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