The Summit County Tea Party and Portage County Tea Party are hosting a joint "sign-wave" Saturday in support of President Donald Trump’s efforts to build a wall on the United States’ southern border with Mexico.

Trump has threatened to declare a national emergency to circumvent Congress if he can’t reach a deal with Democrats to fund the wall.

"It’s important for us to show our fellow citizens that we meant what we said, and we support the president, and we support him for what we think are good reasons," said Portage County Tea Party executive director Tom Zawistowski said. "We’re not anti-immigrant. We’re anti-illegal immigrant."

Zawistowski, 64, said for many, the promise of the border wall was one of the major reasons they voted for Trump.

"We wanted border security, and we wanted immigration reform," said Zawistowski, who lives near Ellet.

Summit County Tea Party President Terri Iannetta said her grandfather immigrated to the U.S. from Czechoslovakia and had a sponsor, which she said was the "right way of coming into this country and making a life for himself."

"The border issue is a hot topic because everybody thinks that if you’re for the border [wall], you’re a racist and you’re against people, and that’s not true," Iannetta said.

Supporters will stand on the pedestrian overpass just south of Graham Road and Route 8 and are asked to park at the rear of the parking lot at Roberts Middle School, 3333 Charles St., Cuyahoga Falls. The event will be from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday.

Organizers are encouraging participants to bring appropriate Trump signs and dress for the weather.

"We just want to let people know, let Trump know, if he even gets wind of this, that he does have Americans in Ohio that support what he’s doing," Iannetta said.

Trump spoke to the nation in a primetime televised address Tuesday night, asking for support for the wall. He was followed by a rebuke from Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, calling on him to reopen the government but continue discussions on border security.

About 800,000 federal employees are affected by the partial government shutdown and missed a paycheck Friday, when the shutdown entered its 21st day, according to the Associated Press.

Beacon Journal reporter Emily Mills can be reached at 330-996-3334, and @EmilyMills818.