Alabama could lose nearly $7 million under Trump's border wall emergency declaration

Saul Bowman
February 27, 2019

Susan Collins was the first Republican senator to say she would vote for a resolution rejecting Donald Trump's declaration of a national emergency at the U.S. -Mexico border.

Trump argues he has the power to proclaim a national emergency to unilaterally direct existing money for building a border wall that Congress has refused to fully fund.

Mr. Trump's emergency declaration is pursuant to the National Emergencies Act, a 1970s-era law created to give the president flexibility to respond to issues he deems of utmost urgency and importance.

Should the measure clear Congress and reach his desk, Trump would be cornered into issuing the first veto of his presidency, an embarrassing development because the measure seeks to directly rein in the president's authority.

The resolution is expected to sail easily through the Democrat-controlled House.

"It's not about politics", Pelosi said.

The Democratic-run House is expected to push through a resolution that would make Trump's reappropriation plan void.

Tillis said Trump "has few bigger allies than me when it comes to supporting his vision of 21st-century border security".

"Be strong and smart", Trump tweeted.

Trump's emergency declaration allows him to reallocate about $6 billion in money already approved for other purposes, most of it from the Defense Department.

He has repeatedly declared that rampant illegal immigration is fuelling a border crisis, leading to higher crime and strains on public services.

"We are aware of no emergency that remotely justifies such a step", wrote the 58 national security officials, who included former Obama and Clinton administration Cabinet secretaries as well as Bush administration security officials.

In open letters Monday, they warned of an abuse of the framework of the US Constitution.

Diverting funds to the project will "undermine USA national security and foreign policy interests", the 58 ex-officials wrote in the letter, first reported by the Washington Post. There simply aren't that many vulnerable Republicans in the Senate, and for a lot of them their next election will take place too far out for this to be a problem anyway.

The resolution is expected to pass both the House and the Senate with the support of Republican representative Justin Amash of MI and Republican senators Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine.

Mitt Romney, who said Monday, "The emergency course is not one I favor". "And we shouldn't have an executive - I don't care if it's Republican or Democrat - that tries to get around Congress with this national emergency declaration".

"I don't like it, and my vote will reflect that".

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), flanked by Representative Joaquin Castro (D-TX) (L) and House Democrats hold a news conference about their proposed resolution to terminate U.S. President Trump's Emergency Declaration on the southern border with Mexico, at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, U.S. February 25, 2019.

The statement says Trump's proclamation has "further eroded his credibility with foreign leaders, both friend and foe".

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