By Conor White
As the government shutdown drags on, calls from some conservative corners have increased for President Trump to declare a national emergency in order to get federal employees back to work while diverting funds to build a border wall. However, conservative radio show host Erick Erickson is cautioning the president against doing just that.
On Monday, President Trump told reporters he would prefer not to call a national emergency, but stopped short of ruling it out entirely.
"I'm not looking to call a national emergency. This is so simple, you shouldn't have to," he said. "Now, I have the absolute legal right to call it, but I'm not looking to do that because this is too simple."
Erickson said President Trump and the GOP should not be nearsighted when considering their options to solve the shutdown.
"A future progressive president could look at this president and says 'Hey, he declared a national emergency on this because he thought it was a national emergency ー I'm going to do it on my pet issue,'" Erickson said.
"The president never wants to be in a position, because of respect for the office, to set precedents his successor could abuse," he added.
Erickson acknowledged, however, that Trump's other option ー negotiating with Democrats ー won't be acceptable to his supporters.
"I think if the president were to cave on this with [House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi, he would hurt himself with his base," Erickson told Cheddar.
Erickson believes the president has done a bad job of communicating to the public that the $5 billion is not just for a border wall, but also for more border patrol agents and customs enforcement, and says the only way to fix it is to talk directly to the American people.
"I think at this point he's got to hit the campaign trail and make the case," he said.
For full interview click here.