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Published On: Sat, Jan 5th, 2019

President Trump makes first briefing room appearance, calls for funding the border wall, takes no questions

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders Thursday afternoon announced there would be a surprise press briefing. She introduced President Trump, who talked about his border wall demand, and then both Sanders and Trump left the room, taking no questions from reporters.

After some congratulatory words for newly elevated House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), he introduced longtime Border Patrol agents. “They’ve done a fantastic job at the border,” he said. The officials voiced support for the wall, funding for which Trump is insisting upon as the government shutdown grinds toward two weeks.

“I just want to start off by congratulating Nancy Pelosi on being elected Speaker of the House,” Trump said. “It’s a very, very great achievement, and hopefully we’re going to work together and we’re going to get lots of things done, like infrastructure and so much more.” “I think it will be a little bit different than a lot of people are thinking so I congratulate Nancy. Tremendous, tremendous achievement.”

“We need protection in our country. We’re gonna make it good, people of our country want it,” Trump said later. “I have never had so much support as I have had in the last week over my stance over border security, border control, or frankly the wall or the barrier.”

“Without a wall you can not have border security,” Trump said, following several statements from the individual officers. “Without a very strong form of barrier, call it what you will, but without a wall you can’t have border security it won’t work.”

Trump said he has received unprecedented support for his border wall in the past few weeks. “I’ve never seen anything like it,” Trump said.

But he made no comments about ongoing negotiations to fund a wall across the Southern border.

“We’ve never had more people wanting to come to the united States, and that has to do with the economy, and it those do with a lot of other things. We’re doing great as a country, but the better we do, the more people want to come in,” Trump said.

photo/ donkeyhotey

The media is not happy about the move.

Erik Wemple bemoaned: “Trump baited-and-switched the media into attending a broadcast of an informercial for his business, on the premise that it would be a news conference.”

Wemple then vowed this: “The lesson here is: Don’t believe Trump or the White House that he runs. However: We won’t sit here at Erik Wemple Blog HQ and aver that these coverage decisions are easy. They are not. As president, Trump has engaged in an inordinate number of short Q-and-A sessions with reporters. He can always be baited into bantering with the media. This time he did not, and he burned a pair of cable news networks into broadcasting his propaganda session.”

“We just got played. We just got played,” CNN’s John King said at the time.

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