[cheers and applause] [cheers and applause] this is "nightline." >> tonight, two views of the border. president trump making his case for the wall. >> look, this is common sense. they need a barrier, they need a wall. >> and at the busiest crossing, asylum seekers still willing to risk it all. >> we have a raft coming over right now. >> the president ready to declare a national emergency. is it really a crisis? and lady dpgaga. the latest artist to change her tune about r. kelly. >> does he deny ever having a sexual relationship with someone who was under age? >> tonight, what his lawyers tell us. plus, mini me. baby, she was born with it.
but abc's matt gutman is hearing a different message. >> reporter: far from washington, this is the front line for border security. >> right now we're headed to zone nine. >> reporter: we're with customs and border protection in the rio grande sector in southeastern texas. >> drag the area to see if there's any footprints. >> reporter: we're with raul ortiz, and it took just seconds for us to see why he called this place the busiest spot along the nearly 2,000-long u.s./mexico border. >> see it? >> reporter: yeah. you got a raft coming over right now. it looks like a tiny raft, it's leaking. a terrible paddle. this group arriving with their hands in the air. and moments later another group. it looks like a mother with two kids.
three kids. and the agents are trying to actually help them up this incredibly steep bank. so they don't get hurt on the way up. these are the types of people who are not trying really hard to evade border patrol. in many cases they're trying to find them to surrender to border patrol. they see about 600 total illegal crossings in this area every day. overwhelming u.s. agencies. ortiz led this group to the main road and they followed along behind him willingly. they just walk right up. and it is here where they'll begin the next phase of their journey, practically empty handed. is that pause of tbecause of th smugglers? >> the smugglers will let them take everything from them, if they have a cell phone. they'll let them keep the cell phone and that's it. >> reporter: they're asked to
take off their shoelaces and any other remaining property. [ speaking in foreign language ] this mother and her daughter crystal trek 1500 miles from honduras. that barbie came with little crystal. her mother tells us she's 22 and brought her daughter here for a better education. since 2006, the number of people crossing the southeastern border illegally has been dramatically declining with a slight uptick in the last year. in the past, migrants have come from mexico. but in recent years, the migrants have been coming primarily from central america. and because those countries are so violent, the border patrol is legally bound to register their asylum requests. >> we cannot al how people to take advantage of the system and get into the shadows. that is a legitimate policy that needs to be reformed so people
who have legitimate claims can be processed in a timely manner. >> reporter: they are released into the u.s. with a notice to reappear. is that catch and release? >> if there is space for a mother and child at a residential center, we'll make that call first. but if there's not a detention space they will put an ankle bracelet or some sort of monitoring device. they will ultimately be released. >> reporter: to better protect the borders, ortiz wants more agents, more technology and a barrier. and today got the chance to make his case to the president himself. >> this zone is the busiest zone in the country. >> reporter: president trump escaping stalled shutdown talks in washington to visit mcallen, texas. . >> they need a barrier, they need a wall. if you don't have it, it's going to be nothing but hard work and problems, and death, a lot of
death. >> reporter: but we got a different story from the mayor of mcallen, jim darling. one of the things the president mentioned is there's a security crisis here. what is the murder rate in mcallen. >> zero. >> reporter: zero. >> we're the safest city in the state of texas. >> reporter: the mayor doesn't want a wall here. but the president steadfast in his fissimission saying he woul declare a national emergency if negotiations falter so he could go around congress and use the military to build his wall. >> we can declare a national emergency. we shouldn't have to. because this is common sense. >> reporter: in washington, nancesy pelosi saying even republicans don't like this idea. >> he's going to have to answer to his own party with that kind
of power. i think he likes the distraction from his other problems. >> reporter: and members of his own party growing weary of the shutdown. >> i think it's important that we do our business around here. and we did our business with these six appropriations bills. so let's get them done. >> reporter: senator collins tweeting in part, we must bring this impasse to an end. the president long claimed the taxpayers would not have to pay for the wall. >> who's going to pay for the wall? >> mexico! >> reporter: he spelled out a plan for making a one-time payment of $5 billion to $10 billion. now a different story. >> do you think they're going to or cents?heck for $5 billion bin no, they're paying through the trade deal. >> nothing in that that has money from the mexicans actually
going into the treasury to reimburse taxpayers. >> reporter: he says he w it. another central theme outlined as he prepared to leave washington today. >> we don't want drugs pouring in. most of our drugs come from the southern border. and they don't come in from the portal, they come in between the portal where you have no barrier. >> reporter: but most of those illegal drugs are not smuggled through gaps. >> most often they're smuggled through the ports of entry themselves. they'll use campers and cars and trucks and hide in compartments. >> reporter: the trial of el chapo, stunning testimony revealing how his cartel usedca
drugs into the u.s. >> a wall is not necessarily going to stop a drug dealer like el chapo. they have multiple ways they bring these drugs in, en masse. and the wall is not going to be the panacea to solve all of that. >> there are places where a wall or fencing would be helpful. but the idea that a border wall stretching from the pacific to the gulf of mexico would stop all drugs from coming into the country or illegal immigration is simply a mits. >> reporter: it's now just shy of the 21st day of the government shutdown. no deal in psychiatrist. >> the trail's worn out. >> reporter: here on the ground, these border agents, among the 800,000 employees who won't see a paycheck tomorrow. for ortiz and his clients, this day ends like so many others. a long journey, emotional days
and more coming. matt gutman, texas. next, lady gaga's mea culpa, why she used bad judgment clab rate being with r. kelly. ith r. kelly. ♪ be right back. with moderate to severe crohn's disease, i was there, just not always where i needed to be. is she alright? i hope so. so i talked to my doctor about humira. i learned humira is for people who still have symptoms of crohn's disease after trying other medications. and the majority of people on humira saw significant symptom relief and many achieved remission in as little as 4 weeks. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened; as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure. before treatment, get tested for tb. tell your doctor if you've been to areas where certain fungal infections are common,
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the streaming has nearly doubled. >> reporter: the public outcry surrounding r. kelly continues to grow after more than a dozen women shared their harrowing stories of alleged controlling and abusive behavior in the explosive docuseries "surviving r. kelly." >> it was consensual but consented by intimidation. there was an ipad, and i didn't want my face on it. >> reporter: and the micro scope intensifies. >> i'm here today to encourage victims of sexual assault or domestic violence related to these allegations to please get in touch with our office. >> reporter: and they are. state attorney's office confirms sin believe i can fly" fly" fl"
has accusations back to the '90s. he was tried and acquitted of charges in 2008. >> we deal with proof, okay? and where's the proof? >> reporter: tonight his attorney steven greenburg is speaking out. is there anything you'd hike li say on behalf of your client to set the record straight? >> none of this is criminal. the state's attorney is asking for people to come out of the wood work and do what? complain that he mistreated them a little bit here or or he talked h do anything wrong. there are no underage victims. no sexual assault victims, there are no victims of domestic en t find. it just didn't ever happen. >> reporter: earlier today, lady
gaga became the latest high-profile artist to speak out against r. kelly, writing on twitter, i stand behind these women 1,000%. believe them, know they are suffering and in pain and feel strongly that their voices should be heard and taken seriously. ♪ gaga also addressed her 2013 collaboration with kelly, "do what you want with my body", performed here on snl. while the music video was so controversial, it was never formally released. >> both r. kelly and i have sometimes very untrue things written about us. so in a way, this was a bond between us. >> reporter: a year after working with kelly, gaga revealed that she herself was a survivor of sexual assault and has now become an outspoken
advocate. >> i myself am a survivor. >> reporter: balance add "till it happens to you." performing at the 2016 oscars. with the emotional vision of sexual assault survivors coming out of the shadows. ♪ last year at an event, gaga revealed more about her pain. >> after i was assaulted, when i was 19, i changed part of me shut down for many years. i didn't tell anyone. i avoided it myself. and felt shame even still today
sanding standing if front of you. i feel shame for what >> reptehevocative song taking on a new level of controversy, in light of the allegations against kelly. gaga is now apologizing. i'm sorry, both for my poor judgment when i was young and for not speaking out sooner. in her statement today, gaga tried to explain her mind set during the collaboration, saying as a victim of sexual assault myself i made both the song and video at a dark time in my life. my intention was to create something extremely defiant and provocative because i was angry and still hadn't processed the trauma in my own life. i think it's clear how explicit my thinking thinking thinking >> it's hard to think of big stars from the last 20 years that he hasn't worked with,
everyone from jay z to mary j. blige, to maxwell, he's had lot of protége acts as well. >> reporter: some now regret their decision. chance the rapper tweeted, i apologize to all survivors for working with him and for taking this long to speak out. and just today, the band phoenix, who collaborated with kelly and performed at coe chela tweeted, we regret we were not more informed and discerning. music streaming numbers for r. kelly have doubled since the docuseries aired. >> his name is out there and people are like, wow, i haven't played r. kelly for a while. >> reporter: as for the collaboration with gaga, it's now been removed. the song "do what you want" is being taken down from other streaming services. in that bombshell docuseries now
seen by 20 million viewers, his alleged victims describe physical and sexual abuse stretching over months and years. >> he was being really nice. and he asked me how old i was. i told him i was 17. >> young girls are impressionable. like he's r. kelly. >> reporter: for r. kelly's ex-wife, andrea kelly, justice is long overdue. she says she was a victim herself for 13 more years of emotional, physical and sexual abuse at the hands of robert kelly. she and the singer have three children together. did you ever fear for your life? >> yes. >> reporter: you thought he might kill you. >> yeah. >> reporter: your kids? >> no. but me definitely. >> reporter: what have you learned about yourself through all of this? >> i fknow now that i'm being ue the for something greater than me. >> reporter: in the state of illinois, there is no statute of limitations on sex crimes, but it involves people coming forward to bring their claims.
>> without the victim, there is no case. when a victim comes forward and says this happened to me and a jury finds that victim credible, that case, not only goes to trial, that case is winnable. >> in terms of why now, i feel like seeing and hearing those stories told so graphically, combined with #me too, that may finally mean the time is up for him. >> reporter: for night lynn, lindsey davis in chicago. one baby's hair-raising modeling debut. up next. . up next. abc news "nightline," sp sponsored by geico. red by geico. ♪
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