Live coverage: Trump delivers State of the Union

Live coverage: Trump delivers State of the Union
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpGillibrand backs federal classification of third gender: report Former Carter pollster, Bannon ally Patrick Caddell dies at 68 Heather Nauert withdraws her name from consideration for UN Ambassador job MORE delivered his second State of the Union address Tuesday night at a time when his administration is dealing with new political obstacles.

Coming after the longest government shutdown in U.S. history, Trump hoped to shore up support among an increasingly divided GOP and get his presidency back on track as he faces a newly emboldened Democratic Party.

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Follow The Hill's live coverage of the primetime address here: 
 
Pelosi knocks Trump's speech

12:13 a.m.

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiNational emergency declaration — a legal fight Trump is likely to win Congress allows Violence Against Women Act to lapse High stakes as Trump, Dems open drug price talks MORE (D-Calif.) panned the president's State of the Union address, noting that for all his warnings about threats against the country, he did not discuss gun violence.

"It will take days to fact-check all the misrepresentations that the President made tonight," Pelosi said in a statement after Trump's speech. "Instead of fear-mongering and manufacturing a crisis at the border, President Trump should commit to signing the bipartisan conference committee’s bill to keep government open and provide strong, smart border security solutions.

“Sadly, while talking about perceived threats to the safety of the American people, he completely ignored the gun violence epidemic that is claiming lives across the country," she added.

The president did not discuss gun violence or mass shootings during his roughly 80-minute speech. He did reference last October's shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh that left 11 people dead, though he spoke about the tragedy in the context of confronting anti-Semitism.

Pelosi told reporters after the speech that she appreciated Trump giving a shout-out to the record number of women in Congress, but noted that he neglected to mention the majority are Democrats.

Sanders: Trump was not completely 'accurate' during speech

 
11:55 p.m.
 
 
"I know that this will probably not shock you, but I hate to say this, but not everything Donald Trump said tonight was true or accurate," Sanders said during his response to Trump's State of the Union address. 
 
Sanders took aim at Trump's claims on healthcare, immigration and the economy including that it's the "hottest." Sanders said that millions of workers were having to work "two or three jobs." 
 
"Somehow or another President Trump didn't mention this in his speech, we have more wealth and income inequality than almost any more country on earth," he said.
 
On his immigration rhetoric, Sanders added that Trump's "demonization of Latinos is nothing less than racist, it is wrong and it also happens to factually inaccurate." 

Stacey Abrams: America made stronger by immigrants, 'not walls'

11:20 p.m.

Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams (D) blasted President Trump in the Democratic response to his State of the Union address Tuesday night.

"America is made stronger by the presence of immigrants—not walls," Abrams said during her televised speech. 

She also spoke about the need to confront racism at "the highest offices" in the country.

"We continue to confront racism from our past and in our present, which is why we must hold everyone from the highest offices to our own families accountable for racist words and deeds—and call racism what it is: wrong," she said.

Becerra knocks Trump's 'extravagant obsession' with border wall

11:15 p.m.

California Attorney General Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraCalifornia to sue Trump over border wall emergency declaration Overnight Energy: Court rules for Trump in environmental case over border wall | House bill would stop Alaska refuge drilling | Ads target Dems over Green New Deal Appeals court sides with Trump in border wall prototype dispute MORE (D) knocked Trump, saying he has an "extravagant obsession" with building a U.S.-Mexico border wall. 

"The president no longer even repeats his promise that Mexico will pay for the thousands of millions of dollars that the wall would cost," he added during the Democrats' Spanish-language response to Trump's State of the Union.  

Becerra added that if the president was interested in an immigration and border security deal that Democrats "have been and will be ready."

"But closing our government – and leaving hundreds of thousands of workers and contractors without work or pay – is not that way to do it," he said.

In addition to the border wall, Becerra knocked Trump for the ongoing investigation into the 2016 election, including potential collusion between the Trump campaign and Moscow. 

"How can it be explained that our nation lives under an intense investigation about Russian interference in our 2016 presidential elections and the involvement of President Trump? Criminality, conspiracy, obstruction of justice – all of these dark shadows follow Donald Trump and his administration," he said.  

Trump wraps State of the Union speech

10:34 p.m.

President Trump wrapped up his State of the Union speech, coming in at just under 90 minutes.

Trump was spotted shaking hands with military officials, Supreme Court justices and lawmakers on his way out of the House chamber.

Though most Democrats quickly left after Trump stopped speaking, Democratic Sens. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinSenate confirms Trump pick William Barr as new attorney general GOP wants to pit Ocasio-Cortez against Democrats in the Senate Senate poised to confirm Trump’s attorney general pick MORE (W.Va.), Chris CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsTrump got in Dem’s face over abortion at private meeting: report Live coverage: Trump delivers State of the Union Actor Chris Evans meets with Democratic senators before State of the Union MORE (Del.) and Doug Jones (Ala.) each shook hands with the president.

Several GOP lawmakers were overheard telling Trump that he gave a "great speech" as he exited the chamber.

Chamber sings 'Happy Birthday' to Tree of Life shooting survivor

10:33 p.m.

The House chamber broke into a rendition of “Happy Birthday” during Tuesday's State of the Union address to celebrate a survivor of the Tree of Life synagogue shooting.

Judah Samet attended Tuesday’s address as a guest of the White House. President Trump acknowledged him in the crowd and noted it was his 81st birthday.

Attendees then broke into song, with Trump mock-conducting from the dais.

“Thank you!” Samet shouted.

“They wouldn't do that for me, Judah,” Trump joked, before continuing on with his speech.

Samet, who is a Holocaust survivor, is a member of the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. A gunman opened fire at the synagogue last October, killing 11 people.

Chants of 'USA' after Trump says 'America will never be a socialist country'

10:23 p.m.
 
Trump pledged during the State of the Union that "America will never be a socialist country," sparking chants of "USA" from GOP lawmakers. 
 
Trump, transitioning from talking about Venezuela, said that he was "alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country." 
 
"We are born free, and we will stay free. Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country," Trump said. 
 
Trump's mention of socialism drew boos and chants of "USA, USA, USA" from Republican lawmakers. 
 
Trump's remarks appeared to a veiled barb at some Democrats in the audience, including Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Congressional Democrats are in the midst of fierce debate with a newly resurgent progressive caucus about the best way to take on Trump. 
 
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezGOP senator voices concern about Trump order, hasn't decided whether he'll back it Ocasio-Cortez in Bronx speech: New Yorkers deserve ‘dignified jobs’ Amazon exec invites Ocasio-Cortez to tour facilities after criticism MORE (D-N.Y.) was spotted smiling during Trump's comments. Sanders, who is giving his own response to Trump's speech, sat stone-faced. 
Trump to meet with North Korea's Kim on Feb. 27-28

10:16 p.m.

Trump touted his efforts to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula, and announced he would hold a second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at the end of the month.

The president said he will travel to Vietnam to meet with Kim on Feb. 27 and 28. The date and location had been reported prior to the start of the State of the Union.

"If I had not been elected ... we would right now, in my opinion, be in a major war with North Korea," Trump said. The remarks prompted some applause from Republicans, and audible groans from Democrats.

"Much work remains to be done, but my relationship with Kim Jong Un is a good one," Trump added.

Trump and Kim held their first summit last June in Singapore. The president subsequently declared North Korea was no longer a nuclear threat, though experts and administration officials have acknowledged that Pyongyang has not taken yet tangible steps to abandon its nuclear arsenal.

Trump calls on Congress to ban late-term abortions

10:10 p.m.

Trump called on Congress to pass legislation outlawing late-term abortions, noting that New York and Virginia have in recent weeks put forward policies that would allow such procedures. 

“To defend the dignity of every person, I am asking Congress to pass legislation to prohibit the late-term abortion of children who can feel pain in the mother’s womb,” Trump said.

“Let us work together to build a culture that cherishes innocent life,” he added.

The president’s comments received applause from Republicans in the room. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) was seen standing and clapping, but most Democrats remained seated.

New York lawmakers last month passed legislation expanding women’s access to abortions. The bill allows women to get abortions after 24 weeks if their life or health is threatened by the pregnancy, or if the fetus is not viable.

In Virginia, Democrats put forward a bill that would allow third-trimester abortions if the mother's health were threatened.

Gillibrand fundraising off of viral SOTU sigh
 
10:04 p.m.
 
 
Gillibrand was spotted sighing and rolling her eyes after Trump described the economy under his administration as the "hottest." 
 
In a tweet less than an hour later, Gillibrand said that if people agreed with her reaction they should donate to her 2020 campaign. 
Freshmen Dems erupt when Trump hails advancements by women
 
10:03 p.m.
 
Dozens of newly-elected Democratic lawmakers rose to their feet and embraced as Trump touted the economic and political gains of women in the past year.
 
"No one has benefited more from our thriving economy than women," Trump said, noting that the demographic filled 58 percent of the newly created jobs in 2018.
 
With that, the women of the Democratic caucus, all dressed in white to honor the suffragettes, rose to their feet and applauded.

"We also have more women serving in Congress than at any time before," Trump continued.
 
Representatives from both parties stood and applauded as women representatives hugged and high-fived one another. Ivanka TrumpIvana (Ivanka) Marie TrumpTrump dismisses Ann Coulter after criticism: 'I hardly know her' On The Money: Trump to sign border deal, declare emergency to build wall | Senate passes funding bill, House to follow | Dems promise challenge to emergency declaration The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the American Academy of HIV Medicine - Will there be any last-minute shutdown drama? MORE, Lara Trump and Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the American Academy of HIV Medicine - Will there be any last-minute shutdown drama? Rule change sharpens Dem investigations into Trump Drama hits Senate Intel panel’s Russia inquiry MORE were shown standing and applauding as chants of "USA" broke out.
 
"That’s great," Trump said. "Really great. And congratulations."
 
More than 100 women were elected to Congress in last year's midterm elections, setting a record. The gains among women helped propel Democrats into the House majority.
 
Trump: I will get the wall built
 
9:53 p.m.
 
President Trump dug in on his pledge to build a wall along the southern border on Tuesday as the issue has been at the heart of a standoff between the White House and congressional Democrats.
 
"In the past, most of the people in this room voted for a wall. But the proper wall never got built. I will get it built,” Trump said as GOP lawmakers stood to applaud.
 
The wall, he said, would be a "smart, strategic, see-through steel barrier" built in areas of need identified by border agents.
 
Trump spent a portion of his speech harping on the need for stricter immigration laws. The president triggered a recent 35-day government shutdown over his demand for $5.7 billion in funding for a wall.
 
Democrats have offered funding for other border security measures, but nothing for the wall, arguing it is impractical and a poor use of money.
 
Trump has raised the prospect of shutting down the government again or declaring a national emergency to secure wall funding. Both moves are opposed by Democrats and many Republicans.
 
Trump's 'caravan' rhetoric sparks Democratic groans
 
9:45 p.m.
 
Congressional Democrats audibly groaned as President Trump pivoted during his State of the Union speech to talk about migrant caravans heading toward the United States. 
 
Trump urged Congress to end illegal immigration and put the "ruthless coyotes, cartels, drug dealers, and human traffickers out of business." 
 
"Large, organized caravans are on the march to the United States," Trump said. 
 
The rhetoric earned him groans from Democrats in the House chamber, who have accused Trump of using the caravans to stir up the Republican base. 
 
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) put up her hand in an apparent signal for Democrats to back off from the audible pushback. 
 
But other Democratic lawmakers, including Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisKamala Harris shopping trip stirs Twitter campaign trail debate Sanders expected to announce exploratory committee next week Bill Maher to Dems: ‘Let’s not eat our own’ in 2020 MORE (D-Calif.), were spotted reacting throughout the chamber. Others immediately took to social media to fire back at Trump.  

Trump's economic rhetoric gets icy reception from Democrats

9:33 p.m.

Trump's talk about the economy under his administration and the GOP tax plan is earning him sparse applause from congressional Democrats.

As the president talked about cutting regulation, a row of Senate Democrats, including Sen. Chris MurphyChristopher (Chris) Scott MurphyHouse passes bill to end US support for Saudi war in Yemen This week: Border deal remains elusive as shutdown looms Border talks stall as another shutdown looms MORE (Conn.), were spotted seated and not clapping.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), a potential 2020 contender, sighed after Trump touted the economy as "the hottest." Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) remained seated while Trump said that the state of the country is "strong."

Female House lawmakers were also spotted remaining seated and not applauding in response to Trump's line about a "new opportunity" in U.S. politics.

Trump says 'ridiculous partisan investigations' will derail economic progress

9:32 p.m.

Trump warned that "ridiculous partisan investigations" would threaten the forward progress of the country, a warning shot at Democrats in the room who have pledged to look into the president's finances, White House security clearances and other areas.

“An economic miracle is taking place in the Untied States, and the only thing that can stop it are foolish wars, politics or ridiculous partisan investigations," Trump said.

As Republican lawmakers rose to applaud, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) could be seen reacting with disdain over the president's shoulder. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam SchiffAdam Bennett SchiffHouse chairmen consult with counsel about ways to get notes from Trump-Putin meetings Overnight Health Care — Sponsored by America's 340B Hospitals — Dems blast rulemaking on family planning program | Facebook may remove anti-vaccine content | Medicare proposes coverage for new cancer treatment Hillicon Valley: Facebook weighs crackdown on anti-vaccine content | Lyft challenges Trump fuel standards rollback | Illinois tries to woo Amazon | New round of China trade talks next week MORE (D-Calif.) was shown grinning in the crowd.

"If there is going to be peace and legislation there cannot be war and investigation," Trump said. "It just doesn’t work that way."

Pelosi's office responded in real time through her Twitter account, saying that Congress "has the responsibility to exercise oversight of the other branches of government. We would be delinquent in our duties if we failed to provide the necessary oversight."

Trump recognizes D-Day veterans, Buzz Aldrin

9:21 p.m.

The president near the start of his speech recognized a trio of veterans of the D-Day invasion in World War II, as well as astronaut Buzz Aldrin.

Lawmakers from both parties rose to give all four individuals a standing ovation. 

Trump received further applause when he pledged that American astronauts “will go back to space on American rockets” this year.

This year marks 50 years since Aldrin and Neil Armstrong became the first men to walk on the moon, and 75 years since the D-Day invasion.

Trump starts speech with bipartisan note
 
9:12 p.m
 
President Trump is kicking off his State of the Union speech by extending a bipartisan olive branch to Congress, arguing he wants to help win for "our country" and enact the agenda of the "American people." 
 
"We meet tonight at a moment of unlimited potential," Trump said starting his speech. "I stand here ready to work with you to achieve historic breakthroughs for all Americans." 
 
He added that he is hoping during the new Congress "we will govern not as two parties but as one nation." 
 

Trump arrives in the House chamber

9:03 p.m. 

President Trump arrived to bipartisan applause at the House chamber to deliver the annual State of the Union address.

Energy Secretary Rick PerryJames (Rick) Richard PerryThe Hill's 12:30 Report: State of the Union takeaways | Sights and sounds from the night | Virginia attorney general admits he wore blackface Energy Secretary Rick Perry is designated survivor for 2019 State of the Union Live coverage: Trump delivers State of the Union MORE is designated survivor

8:54 p.m.

Energy Secretary Rick Perry will serve as the designated survivor for Tuesday night’s State of the Union address.

A Cabinet official is selected each year to remain at an undisclosed location during the State of the Union as a precaution in the event of a catastrophic incident at the Capitol. 

Agriculture Secretary Sonny PerdueGeorge (Sonny) Ervin PerdueSenate buzz grows for Abrams after speech electrifies Dems Energy Secretary Rick Perry is designated survivor for 2019 State of the Union Live coverage: Trump delivers State of the Union MORE served as the designated survivor during last year’s State of the Union, and former Veterans Affairs Secretary David ShulkinDavid Jonathon ShulkinIs a presidential appointment worth the risk? It’s time to end the scare tactics and get to work for our veterans House Democrats open investigation of Trump associates' influence at VA MORE filled the role during President Trump’s 2017 address to a joint session of Congress.

Perry, who has served in Trump's Cabinet since the start of his administration, is 13th in the presidential line of succession.

Trump says he's 'very excited' as he heads to Capitol 
 
8:46 p.m. 
 
President Trump is on his way to the Capitol to give his second State of the Union speech. 
 
Leaving the White House, Trump told reporters that he is "very excited" about his speech, which is expected to last approximately an hour. 
 
Trump is expected to tout the need for bipartisanship during his speech to promote the "agenda of the American people." 
 
"Together, we can break decades of political stalemate. We can bridge old divisions, heal old wounds, build new coalitions, forge new solutions, and unlock the extraordinary promise of America’s future," he is expected to say. 

Trump to describe immigration debate as key 'divide' between working class and political class

8:45 p.m.

President Trump on Tuesday night will argue that immigration is the issue that illustrates the split between the country’s working and political classes as he pushes for stricter immigration policies in his State of the Union address. 

“No issue better illustrates the divide between America’s working class and America’s political class than illegal immigration. Wealthy politicians and donors push for open borders while living their lives behind walls and gates and guards,” Trump will say, according to excerpts of the speech shared by the White House.

Immigration is likely to be a central theme of Trump’s State of the Union address, which comes amid a standoff with Democrats over funding for a wall along the southern border. Trump has raised the prospect of declaring a national emergency to secure wall funding, something opposed by Democrats and many Republicans.

The president’s speech on Tuesday night will also lay out his priorities for the coming year, including lowering prescription drug prices, boosting the economy and implementing foreign policy.

“The agenda I will lay out this evening is not a Republican Agenda or a Democrat Agenda," he will say, according to prepared excerpts. "It is the agenda of the American People."

White House surrogates have for days insisted that the president’s address on Tuesday night will have a focus on the need for comity and bipartisan cooperation. However, Trump on Tuesday morning lashed out at Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerNational emergency declaration — a legal fight Trump is likely to win House Judiciary Dems seek answers over Trump's national emergency declaration Mandatory E-Verify: The other border wall MORE (D-N.Y.) and hours later reportedly laced into a host of Democrats during a private lunch with television anchors.

Pence, senators enter House chamber for Trump speech

 8:38 p.m.
 
Senators and Vice President Pence are arriving in the House chamber to hear Trump's speech. 
 
Senators lined up on the Senate floor starting after 8 p.m. Pence, who also serves as president of the Senate, then escorted senators across the Capitol for the speech. Senators were spotted hobnobbing with their House counterparts once they reached the House chamber. 

Becerra to blast Trump over border, immigration policies 

8:22 p.m. 

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra (D) will rip President Trump over his proposal for a U.S.-Mexico border wall during the Democrats' Spanish-language response to Trump's State of the Union. 

Becerra will call Trump's floated option of declaring a national emergency in order to construct the wall both "immoral" and "illegal," adding that the country is in a state of "disorder," "stress" and "hostility." 

Becerra is also expected to knock the Trump administration on its policies that call for separating families who enter the U.S. illegally along the U.S.-Mexico border. 

"They're putting a wall between parents and their children, by putting children in cages away from their families," he will say. "Friends, believe me, we can bring down walls with our hands. More than that, we have done it." 

In addition the physical wall along the border, Becerra will accuse Trump of trying to build a "wall" on a myriad of issues, including health care and voting rights. 

"They are putting a wall between you and your doctor, dictating what services you can receive," he will say. "They are putting a wall between you and the voting booth."

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez arrives at Capitol

8:17 p.m.

Freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) arrived shortly before 8 p.m. for her first State of the Union address as a member of Congress.

The liberal firebrand brought Ana Maria Archila as her guest. Archila confronted then-Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeTrump suggests Heller lost reelection bid because he was 'hostile' during 2016 presidential campaign Live coverage: Trump delivers State of the Union Sasse’s jabs at Trump spark talk of primary challenger MORE (R-Ariz.) in an elevator last year during the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court Justice Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughConstitutional conservatives need to oppose the national emergency Kavanaugh shows his stripes on Supreme Court's 'shadow docket' Ginsburg back at Supreme Court MORE as the judge faced sexual misconduct allegations.

Ocasio-Cortez has emerged as major force within the party, offering support for a Green New Deal, higher tax rates on the wealthiest Americans and other progressive ideas. The freshman lawmaker joined numerous other Democratic lawmakers in wearing white to Tuesday's address to honor the suffragettes. 

Abrams: Shutdown was Trump's 'stunt' 
 
7:48 p.m.
 
Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams will knock President Trump and Republicans over the recent government shutdown during her State of the Union response. 
 
"The shutdown was a stunt engineered by the president of the United States, one that defied every tenet of fairness and abandoned not just our people - but our values," Abrams will say, according to released excerpts. 
 
Abrams will recount how she recently volunteered to distribute meals to federal workers who were furloughed during the 35-day partial shutdown, the longest in U.S. history. 

"Making their livelihoods a pawn for political games is a disgrace," Abrams will say. 

But Abrams is also expected to talk about the need for bipartisanship and for individuals to work together, adding that in the United States "we do not succeed alone." 

"We may come from different sides of the political aisle; but, our joint commitment to the ideals of this nation cannot be negotiable," she will say.

She's expected to use her remarks to take a veiled swipe at Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDems ready aggressive response to Trump emergency order, as GOP splinters Green New Deal Resolution invites big picture governing ‘Contingency’ spending in 3B budget deal comes under fire MORE (R-Ky.), who recently called a key Democratic proposal that would make Election Day a federal holiday a "power grab."

"We must reject the cynicism that says allowing every eligible vote to be cast and counted is a 'power grab.' … The foundation of our moral leadership around the globe is free and fair elections, where voters pick their leaders – not where politicians pick their voters," Abrams is expected to say. 

Ann Coulter watching Trump's speech 'for the commercials'

7:46 p.m.

Conservative commentator Ann Coulter said Tuesday she plans to watch the State of the Union address, "but just for the commercials."

Coulter, who voted for President Trump and wrote a book in 2016 lavishing praise on the then-candidate, has in recent weeks been an outspoken critic of the president over his inability to secure funding for a wall along the southern border.

The State of the Union does not feature commercials during the president's address.

Flake says he’s ‘glad’ woman who confronted him during Kavanaugh hearing is at SOTU
 
7:36 p.m.

Former Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) said Tuesday he’s glad the woman who confronted him in a Capitol elevator last year during Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing is attending the State of the Union as a guest of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.).

“I’m glad she’s there,” he said on CBS News, where he’s a contributor. “You know, she had a real impact. I was very unsettled about where we were on the Kavanaugh nomination. I felt there was no reason why we couldn’t have an FBI investigation and that episode in the elevator helped me make up my mind to actually request and demand that investigation.”

Footage of Ana Maria Archila’s exchange with Flake went viral last September when she told the then-senator that he was sending a message that sexual assault survivors “don’t matter” by supporting Kavanaugh’s nomination despite sexual misconduct allegations against the judge.

The Senate ultimately confirmed Kavanaugh, 50-48, with Flake voting in favor of the judge.
 
McConnell: Trump could 'win' on national emergency fight

7:22 p.m. 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Tuesday that President Trump could "prevail" in the fight with Congress over an emergency declaration to build the U.S.-Mexico border wall by vetoing a potential resolution.

McConnell, speaking with Fox News's Martha MacCallum, declined to say how he would vote on a potential resolution of disapproval, but predicted that it "wouldn't be without controversy" if the president declares a national emergency.

"I think there are different opinions about it, and if he goes that route we'll just hash it out," McConnell said, asked if he thought Republicans would line up behind Trump if he declares a national emergency. 

The Senate GOP leader added that Trump could "prevail" in a potential fight with Congress by vetoing a resolution of disapproval if it reaches his desk. The resolution would initially only need to be able to garner a simple majority in both chambers. Democrats would then need two-thirds support in both chambers in order to override a veto.

"The president could win anyway by vetoing the bill and then trying to get enough votes to sustain it, so may ultimately be able to prevail on the national emergency alternative," McConnell said.

Though a group of lawmakers have until Feb. 15 to reach a deal on breaking the months-long stalemate over border security funding, the president hasn't yet ruled out declaring a national emergency to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Without a deal the government could face its second partial shutdown in as many months. McConnell told Fox News on Tuesday that "nothing good comes out of a government shutdown."