Pence: Trump hasn’t made decision on declaring national emergency

Vice President Pence said President Trump has yet to decide whether he will declare a national emergency to build a wall on the southern border as the commander-in-chief prepares to address the nation from the Oval Office.

“The president has made no decision with regard to a national emergency,” Pence said Tuesday on NBC’s “Today.”

Pence, responding to a direct question whether Trump will claim an emergency in Tuesday’s prime-time speech, said he thinks the president will “explain to the American people that we have a humanitarian and security crisis at our southern border.”

“It is a real crisis,” Pence added. “Tonight he will tell the American people why Congress should act.”

Trump and Congress are at a stalemate regarding funding for the barrier the president is demanding be built on the Mexican-US border, a disagreement that has led to a partial government shutdown that entered its 18th day on Tuesday.

Trump first raised the idea of using a national emergency declaration to build his wall last Friday and repeated it over the weekend.

“We’re looking at a national emergency because we have a national emergency – just read the papers,” he told reporters at the White House on Sunday.

The president is also heading to Texas on Thursday to take a closer look at the border.

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