Washington: US President Donald Trump has halted his plan to declare a national emergency over immigration at the southern border, saying it was an "easy way out", but he remained open to declaring it at a later time.
"It's the easy way out," CNN quoted the President as saying on Friday.
"Congress should do this. This is too simple. It's too basic. And Congress should do this... If they can't do it, I will declare a national emergency. I have the absolute right to do it," Trump said.
One of the reasons Trump is reluctant to declare a national emergency is because he believes that his administration will be sued and that his actions will be blocked by the 9th Circuit.
"I'll be sued. It'll be brought to the 9th Circuit and maybe even though the wording is unambiguous... We'll probably lose there, too," Trump said, adding he would "hopefully win" at the Supreme Court.
Earlier in the week, White House lawyers began laying the groundwork for the legal defence of a national emergency declaration on the southern border, informed sources told CNN.
Earlier Friday, Trump continued to bolster his case about the need to build a wall.
"I just got back and it is a far worse situation than almost anyone would understand, an invasion!" Trump tweeted following his Thursday trip to the border town of McAllen in Texas.
"I have been there numerous times - The Democrats, Cryin' Chuck (Schumer) and Nancy (Pelosi) don't know how bad and dangerous it is for our entire country.
"The Steel Barrier, or Wall, should have been built by previous administrations long ago. They never got it done - I will. Without it, our country cannot be safe. Criminals, gangs, human traffickers, drugs and so much other big trouble can easily pour in. It can be stopped cold!"
Later during his roundtable, Trump reiterated his belief that the country is "under siege.
"We have a country that is being invaded by criminals and by drugs and we're going to stop it," Trump said, offering no evidence to back up his claims.