Trump threatens to declare national emergency for border wall

The partial government shutdown is in its third week as the president digs in his heels on wall funding.
5:18 | 01/07/19

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Transcript for Trump threatens to declare national emergency for border wall
Meanwhile here in Washington we're now in day seventeen. Of the partial federal government shutdown this puts this shut down on record for the third longest in American history it doesn't look like it's going to. Let up anytime soon let's go to White House our Karen Travers has been tracking that she was at the White House all weekend Karen. They tried to have negotiations this weekend but it doesn't appear there was any progress. No movement over the weekend DeVon police. More discussions. And negotiations. Because if you look at who is in the room over the weekend it was vice president patents it was the Homeland Security secretary Kristine Nielsen and Jared Kushner but. DeVon they were meeting with congressional aides say we're not sitting down with lawmakers so it was hard to see how that group was going to produce a breakthrough that would result in a big announcement that the shutdown was going to and president trump yesterday seemed to undermine those efforts over the weekend on his own vice president when he said that. If he and Chuck Schumer Nancy Pelosi sat down they can solve this in twenty minutes if the Democrats won in two and ultimately DeVon that is what everybody thinks is going to have to happen this is not about sound discussions it's not even the top lawmakers from both parties. This is president from in the democrats' right now and neither side is budging. Yeah there's no meetings scheduled today either parent but the president is still talking about the possibility of declaring. A national emergency something he says he can do on his own. What's the latest on that end it what what's your sense somewhere that's even legal. The president yesterday said he is considering declaring a national emergency and what that would do according to the administration is allowed them to take money that has already been approved for the Pentagon and put it toward building the walk or burning congress there a couple things here one a lot of questions about whether they can even do that you can't legally take money appropriated for issue an eight and put it to issue beat. But the White House says that by declaring a national emergency the president would have the authority to do that. DeVon legal experts say eat it declaring a national emergency may not make that possible if the president goes down this path he will almost certainly face a legal challenge in this would be then tied up in court what the president said yesterday though DeVon that was interesting he said he's still thinking about that and he'll make a decision on whether to declare a national emergency. They so what happens in the coming days that's certainly seems to be a public acknowledgment that the president is waiting to see what happens in the shut down negotiations. Before deciding on that it's either a crisis at the border that requires a national emergency or it isn't. The president certainly seems to say in this is his you know final card he could play if you will if negotiations do not go well. Of course cared it's starting to feel like a crisis for a heck of a lot of people out in the country not just they. Hundreds of thousands of federal workers but also people who receive. Government death financing for their homes food stamps people waiting on those tax refunds. What have you been here even talking to a lot of radio stations around the country what are they hearing what are you hearing from people out there about the impact this is happening. Yet it is not an abstract thing I think people here government employees they automatically think of Washington because of the federal agencies that are of course headquartered here. 800 federal employees right now know or in acted by this partial shutdown. Half working without pay the other half off the job but they're all here there across the country they're in small towns in Utah West Virginia Alabama and that's having a trickle effect into this community's imagine people are going to work in a big office building they're not going alliance and I'm getting sandwiches are not buying coffee at the local shop down the street. And DeVon I toxic more than half dozen radio stations today across the country ABC radio stations. And they're a lot of frustration and questions about the president said yesterday. He was asked by reporters if he can relate to the federal employees impacted by the shut down. Here's that he had to say. And DeVon that's coming we've heard from the president a lot in the last couple of days and he says that people back him on this said he treated last week that give a pair of most of the people impact about the shutdown are Democrats he still wants to end this but he insisted. That these federal employees are behind him they support his push for border security. I get a say we're not sure who he's talking to or in what context he's honing his outreach with federal employees that. He would have certainly gotten in touch of the ABC news say they're very concerned they want to get back on the job they're worried about their paychecks. And they don't wanna be a pond in this political fight here in Washington. Take Karen thanks so much for your reporting the White House trying to stay on an all day and speaking of those stories we want to hear them if you've been affected. Personally in some way by the shutdown go to abcnews.com slash politics look on the right hand column their shot down stories you can. Give us yours tell us how you've been impacted perhaps it's by a longer. TSA line at the airport we're hearing reports of longer lines because those workers are calling in sick let us know what love to hear your storing get in touch with you.

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

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