Trump cancels trip to economic forum in Davos, Switzerland, over shutdown

By Kathryn Watson

/ CBS News

Trump considers national emergency to fund wall

President Trump announced Thursday that he will cancel his "very important trip" to Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum in light of the partial government shutdown over border wall funding.

Mr. Trump, who made the announcement before landing in McAllen, Texas, for a visit to the southern border, said earlier in the day he wouldn't attend the forum later this month if the government was shut down. But the shutdown has no end in sight, with Mr. Trump walking out on a meeting with congressional leaders Wednesday after he and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi disagreed over wall funding.

"Because of the Democrats intransigence on Border Security and the great importance of Safety for our Nation, I am respectfully cancelling my very important trip to Davos, Switzerland for the World Economic Forum. My warmest regards and apologies to the @WEF!" Mr. Trump tweeted Thursday.

Because Mr. Trump had said he wouldn't attend the event during a shutdown and the forum doesn't start for 12 more days, the president's cancellation doesn't bode well for federal employees.

Mr. Trump, who attended the event last year, was scheduled to attend this year along with other top administration officials, including Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

The stalemate over the shutdown has seemingly no end in sight. Mr. Trump is demanding $5.7 billion for a border wall, along with billions more for other border-security measures.

Democrats continue to insist they won't fund the wall. The president has cast blame on Democratic leaders even though Mr. Trump said in a televised meeting with Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer last month that he would be "proud" to shut down the government and wouldn't blame them.

Also Thursday, Mr. Trump threatened to declare a national emergency to fund the border wall if he can't reach a deal with Congress.

"If this doesn't work out, I probably will do it, I would almost say definitely," Mr. Trump told reporters as he was leaving the White House for Texas, adding later, "If we don't make a deal, I would say 100 percent, but I don't want to say 100 percent."

First published on January 10, 2019

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Kathryn Watson

Kathryn Watson is a politics reporter for CBS News Digital.

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