CBS, Fox, NBC and now ABC are all confirmed to air the Democratic response to President Trump’s Tuesday primetime speech about “the Humanitarian and National Security crisis on our Southern Border.” Among cable outlets, CNN, MSNBC, Fox News Channel and Telemundo will carry the response.
Airing Tuesday at 9/8c and set to last eight minutes (per the White House), Trump will present to the nation his stance on the partial government shutdown, now in its 18th day, and the need for greater security, ahead of his trip to the southern border this Thursday.
On Monday evening — shortly after the last of the major broadcast networks agreed to carry Trump’s speech (following many hours of in-house deliberation) — Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi called for the Democrats to be given equal time to respond. UPDATE: TVLine has confirmed that Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer will deliver the joint response.
The broadcast networks had aimed to air their regularly scheduled Tuesday slates fully intact if briefly interrupted, when we were just talking about Trump’s address. But now…? Get used to disappointment, as Westley says.
UPDATE (12:11 pm): Fox says it still plans to air its schedule in full, while CBS is bumping its fresh episodes of FBI and NCIS: New Orleans to next week (NCIS proper remains unaffected).
UPDATE (2:25 pm): NBC will now air an Ellen’s Game of Games rerun at 9 pm and join it in progress after the news event. New Amsterdam will air as planned, at 10 pm.
UPDATE (2:58 pm): ABC plans to air its line-up (black-ish, Splitting Up Together and The Rookie) in its entirety following the Democratic response.
Parts of the United States government shut down on Dec. 22 — leaving about 800,000 federal workers on the clock without pay, and several federal systems closed — when a deal could not be reached between lawmakers and the president to earmark north of $5 billion to fund a physical wall spanning the southern border. Excepted federal employees (not in the competitive service or the Senior Executive service) who are furloughed will get back pay once the government reopens.
President Trump affirmed on Sunday that he might “declare a national emergency” in order to use military dollars to pay for the wall — and many speculate that that is what he will announce during Tuesday night’s speech.