WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement after President Donald Trump addressed the nation from the Oval Office on his demand for billions of dollars for a wall at the southern border:

"Tonight, what we heard from the Oval Office was a desperate attempt by the President to gain support for his medieval border wall. It won’t work. Democrats support strong border security. And we can have a debate about effective border security, but we shouldn’t do it while holding the federal government hostage. Unfortunately, President Trump has decided to stop paying hundreds of thousands of federal law enforcement personnel and researchers to pressure Congress for his wall.

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"Mr. President, you may have never lived paycheck to paycheck, but many workers do. Stop picking on these federal employees."

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