Did Trump Give Democrats Ammunition to Block His Emergency Declaration?

A section of the border fence in Naco Arizona being replaces with modern barriers

A section of the border fence in Naco Arizona being replaces with modern barriers Credit UPI Barcroft Media

Trump is already facing several legal challenges, including one promised by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra arguing that the state will be harmed when Trump diverts funds for a wall.

Protesters are gathering today in downtown Washington and other cities across the United States to denounce President Donald Trump's decision to declare a national emergency at the southern border with Mexico.

"We knew something like this might happen, and with our sister state partners we are ready to go", Becerra told Martha Raddatz.

On Friday, Trump - desperate to secure billions in funding for a wall he initially promised Mexico would pay for - declared a national emergency at the southern border, giving him access to almost $7 billion in additional funding, including from the Department of Defense. His move aims to let him spend money appropriated by Congress for other purposes.

If Congress votes to disapprove President Trump's declaration of a national emergency, Trump is prepared to veto it, White House senior adviser Stephen Miller said on Sunday.

During the contentious Fox News Sunday segment, Wallace repeatedly pressed Miller on the constitutionally and presidential precedent for issuing a national emergency to fund a border wall. To make up for the shortfall, a few hours prior to signing the legislation, President Trump declared a "national emergency".

How does a national emergency help President Trump fund the wall? Californian governor, Gavin Newsom is on board with Becerra, and both say they're waiting to learn which federal programs will lose money to determine the impact each state could face.

He said California may be harmed by less federal funding for emergency response services, the military and stopping drug trafficking.

Three Texas landowners and an environmental group filed the first lawsuit against Trump's move on Friday, saying it violates the Constitution and would infringe on their property rights.

Trump, who has said he expects his declaration to end up before the U.S. Supreme Court, appeared to undercut the sense of urgency by admitting he could take more time to build the wall: "I didn't need to do this but I'd rather do it much faster", he acknowledged during Friday's rollicking Rose Garden news conference. Congress has never defined a national emergency in the National Emergencies Act of 1976, which has previously been invoked many times without a single successful legal challenge. House Democrats have called Trump's declaration "unlawful", and are considering a joint resolution disapproving of the declaration.

"I think many of us are concerned about this", Republican Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, who chairs the Senate Homeland Security Committee, told NBC's "Meet the Press". Miller's comments during a Fox News interview made it clear the president is unlikely to back down.

Trump could, however, veto any resolution of disapproval from Congress.

"But to take money away from defense, from DOD, in order to build this wall that is essentially a campaign promise, I think is really wrong priorities and I think it's very harmful to the country".

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