President Trump Addresses Nation as Shutdown Showdown Continues

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – President Trump made his first primetime address from the Oval Office on Tuesday night, laying out his case for building a border wall. The wall was a campaign promise and is now the sticking point in the government shutdown.

The president argued the only solution to ending the shutdown is for Democrats to agree to funding the border wall. He called illegal migration a “growing crisis” and said now is the time to act.

Trump argued all Americans are hurt by illegal migration, saying it strains public resources and drives down jobs and wages. Critics argue that’s hard to quantify.

The President also said the border is a pipeline for illegal drugs, including meth and heroin. Fact checkers say the vast majority comes from legal ports of entry.

The President said building a wall is not immoral as some critics have argued.

“They don’t build walls because they hate the people on the outside but because they love the people on the inside. The only thing that is immoral is the politicians to do nothing and continue to allow for innocent people to be so horribly victimized,” the President said.

Democratic leadership in Congress says President Trump should stop holding the American people hostage and must reopen the government.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer spoke from Washington right after the President.

“The fact is the women and children at the border are not a security threat, they are humanitarian challenges,” Pelosi said.

“This President just used the backdrop of the Oval Office to manufacture a crisis, stoke fear and divert attention from the turmoil in his administration,” Schumer said.

A Trump supporter and former military member told WCCB Charlotte he thinks the President has done great things for Veterans and the economy but disagrees on the wall.

“I personally think that it should not be the solution. I think, overall the solution should be better immigration policies,” says Uptown Charlotte resident Larry Subramanian.

One TSA employee at Charlotte-Douglas Airport told WCCB Charlotte she’s worried because she won’t get a paycheck if the shutdown continues past Friday.

She said some co-workers are calling out sick, others are picking up extra jobs with Uber, Postmates, and Grubhub.

“Hopefully he realizes that, you know, there’s no way we can adapt to not having a paycheck. There’s no way that we’re going to be able to go back and forth to work with no money, no gas to get there, and no food to eat,” the employee says.

Around 150 air traffic controllers at Charlotte-Douglas also won’t be getting paid if the shutdown continues. Work has stopped on construction of the new air traffic control tower.