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Trump press conference: Surprise briefing room appearance amid shutdown

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President Donald Trump on Thursday made a surprise appearance in the White House briefing room to discuss border security, but he abruptly left without taking any questions.

This was the first time Trump stood in front of the podium in the briefing room as president. The appearance lasted less than 10 minutes.

“It’s a beautiful place,” the president said after looking around the room.

The president began the briefing by congratulating Nancy Pelosi over being elected as the new House Speaker but promptly changed the topic to border security.

Trump didn’t offer much new information as he appeared alongside border agents and reiterated many of the same talking points on immigration and the wall he wants to build along the US-Mexico border.

The president’s insistence on obtaining funding for the border wall has pushed the US government into a partial shutdown that has lasted nearly two weeks and has no end in sight.

“I have never had so much support as I have in the last week over my stance for border security, for border control, and for frankly, the wall or the barrier,” Trump said.

“You can call it a wall, you can call it a barrier, whatever you want,” the president added.

Recent polls show Americans split on the border wall issue, and many would like to see the money that would be dedicated to it allocated elsewhere.

Read more: Most Americans would rather spend the $5 billion Trump is demanding for the border wall on infrastructure, education, or healthcare

During the brief appearance, Trump also claimed that “nobody” knows more about drones than he does.

“Having a drones and various other forms of sensors, they’re all fine but they’re not going to stop the problems that this country has,” Trump said. “Nobody knows more about drone technology than I do.”

Around the same time as Trump’s expedited press briefing, he shared an image on Twitter with a caption that borrowed from HBO’s “Game of Thrones.”

The caption, which appeared below an image of the president, said, “The Wall is Coming.”

The White House gave reporters little warning about Thursday’s briefing. White House press secretary announced at 4:07 p.m. ET in a tweet that there would be a briefing at 4:10 p.m. ET.

After Trump’s appearance, many White House reporters complained what transpired didn’t constitute a press briefing given that he took no questions.

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