Trump visits Mexico border, threatens to bypass Congress to build wall

US president Donald Trump visited the US-Mexico border on Thursday, reiterating an urgent need to fund a border wall.

Trump visits mexico wall Source: Bloomberg

US president Donald Trump flew to the border of Texas and Mexico to further plead his case to fund the US border wall.

Trump held a border security roundtable where he was joined by tearful family members of people killed by illegal migrants, along with a display of weapons, cash and confiscated drugs.

Trump’s latest visit comes after an on-going feud between the US president and the Democrats over approval of $5.7 billion in funding to build the border wall.

During his televised address on Wednesday, Trump urged Congress to recognise the urgent need for the wall. Critics expected the US president to declare a national emergency during the speech, but Trump fell through.

On Thursday, however, threats to declare a national emergency re-surfaced. Trump said he would use emergency powers to bypass Congress to get the fuding needed to pay for the wall.

‘If we don't have a barrier, a very substantial barrier of some kind, you're not going to be able to solve this problem,' Trump said at the border briefing.

Trump threatens national emergency if wall not funded

The government shutdown enters its 20th day over the wall issue, with the standoff leaving thousands of federal employees without pay.

'The government shutdown was because the Democrats will not fund border security. Plain and simple.' Trump said on Thursday.

Trump has held his ground on the issue, predicting the conflicts to continue into late January. He said his lawyers told him he had the power to invoke national emergency powers if Democrats don’t agree to funding.

Trump told reporters on Thursday that if Congress fails to bend on the border wall funding, he would be within his rights to declare an emergency, "I would almost say definitely," he said.

Democrats have said if Trump was to declare a national emergency, the process may be illegal. Democrats have not indicated any further talks will take place.

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