President TrumpDonald John TrumpREAD: Transcript of James Comey’s interview with House Republicans Klobuchar on 2020: ‘I do think you want voices from the Midwest’ Israel boycott fight roils Democrats in year-end spending debate MORE on Tuesday defended the aesthetic qualities of his proposed wall along the southern border, arguing that it will be a “beautiful,” cost-effective structure made of “artistically designed slats.”
“The Democrats, are saying loud and clear that they do not want to build a Concrete Wall – but we are not building a Concrete Wall, we are building artistically designed steel slats, so that you can easily see through it,” Trump tweeted.
“It will be beautiful and, at the same time, give our Country the security that our citizens deserve,” he continued. “It will go up fast and save us BILLIONS of dollars a month once completed!”
….It will be beautiful and, at the same time, give our Country the security that our citizens deserve. It will go up fast and save us BILLIONS of dollars a month once completed!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 19, 2018
Trump has previously said that the wall would be transparent. The structure has been a cornerstone of the president’s efforts to crack down on illegal immigration.
While Trump appeared to suggest in his tweet that Democrats’ main issue with his long-sought after border wall is based on aesthetics, party leaders have consistently opposed the concept in its entirety and made clear their opposition is based on policy and principle.
“The wall isn’t about money. The wall is about morality. It’s the wrong thing to do. It doesn’t work. It’s not effective,” House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D’Alesandro PelosiIsrael boycott fight roils Democrats in year-end spending debate McConnell predicts no shutdown: Trump ‘flexible’ on border deal Ocasio-Cortez had highest percentage of small donors in midterms: report MORE (D-Calif.) told reporters on Tuesday.
Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerMake Trump own the shutdown over his ill-advised border wall More than a tantrum McConnell’s marijuana conundrum: Cory Gardner MORE (D-N.Y.) told NBC on Sunday that Trump “will not get a wall.”
Trump has demanded $5 billion in funding for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, raising the prospect of a partial government shutdown at the end of the week if he and Congress can’t reach an agreement.
However, the White House on Tuesday appeared amenable to signing off on a lower amount to avert a shutdown.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told Fox News that the administration has “other ways” to get the $5 billion, and that it does not “want to shut down the government.”
Trump told reporters it was “too early to say” whether a shutdown will be avoided, but the remarks were a notable shift from last week when he said he would be “proud” to shutdown the government.
Democrats have refused to budge on their offer of $1.6 billion for border security money that would go toward border fencing and security measures.
Lawmakers must pass a series of funding bills by Friday to avoid a shutdown.