President Donald Trump went on camera at 4 PM today to address the partial government shutdown, now in its 29th day, caused by the Democrats refusal to fund $5.7 Billion to construct a wall at the border between the U.S. and Mexico. Negotiations between Trump and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have faltered as each side has dug in.
In a very brief speech, Trump’s proposal is outlined as follows
– $800M in urgent humanitarian
– $805M new equipment
– 2000 new border agents and law enforcement personnel
– new court judges to address a backlog of 900,000 cases
– a new system to allow Central American minors to apply for refugee status in their own country
– $ 5.7Billion for strategic deployment of the wall, which will cover 230 miles this year in the most urgent areas
Trump noted that all of these measures had been supported by Democrats in the past. Not much movement in this part of the proposal, these are measures he has approved in the past.
His new offer to Democrats is 3 years of “legislative relief” for DACA recipients, allowing them to get work permits, licenses, and have protection from deportation. He noted that 300,000 of the estimate 700,000 total are about to have their status expire and they will have more time.
Additionally, Trump committed to weekly bipartisan meetings on immigration reform to produce a finished product that will solve all of the problems in the long term.
Editor’s note: I have a bad feeling the Democrats will shortly blast this as not sufficient. If I am not mistaken, this same deal, or actually a better one, was on the table last year and not accepted by the Democrats.
It is particularly telling that all of the measures in his proposal have been supported in the past. Perhaps the goal of President Trump to show that the Democrats are less interested in immigration reform and more interested in hurting Trump.