LAFAYETTE, Calif. (KTVU) - Congressional Democrat Mark DeSaulnier of Concord responded Saturday to the president’s offer to reopen the government by calling it a “political stunt.”
At a packed town hall meeting in Lafayette, the congressman said he agreed with much of what the president had to say regarding border security, except when it comes to a wall along the southern border.
“You can’t compromise when they’re not willing to move towards us,” DeSaulnier said. “The wall is a nonstarter. I’ve been in hearings where experts have said this is not the best way to secure the border.”
The government shutdown, now in its 29th day, is the longest in U.S. history. The president, who has said he takes ownership of shutting down the government, has been under pressure to end the stalemate. However, he’s shown no indication that he’s willing to back down when it comes to a wall.
Shortly after the president made his remarks from the White House, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tweeted, “What is original in the President's proposal is not good. What is good in the proposal is not original."
What is original in the President’s proposal is not good. What is good in the proposal is not original. Democrats will vote next week to add additional border security funding for ports of entry, advanced technology for scanning vehicles for drugs & immigration judges.— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) January 19, 2019
DeSaulnier echoed that message. “This is nothing but a political stunt by the president. He’s trying to divide people and [the wall] is not a good investment,” DeSaulnier said.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is expected to bring the president’s proposal up for a vote next week, but DeSaulnier and other Democrats say they’ve already voted on bills to reopen the government. They are urging McConnell to vote on those bills so federal employees can get back to work.