President Donald Trump stated on Friday that he is declaring a national emergency on the southern border, using his executive powers in order to allocate billions towards building a wall, although he has already signed a package that includes just $1.4 billion for border security, Fox News informed.
“We’re going to confront the national security crisis on our southern border … one way or the other, we have to do it,” Trump said in the Rose Garden.
His move is expected to face an immediate and harsh legal challenge that would postpone the whole process. However, this plan allows the President to proceed his fight for constructing a border wall while averting another partial government shutdown by signing the new funding package.
Trump once again stated that “walls work” confirming the emergency declaration would go together with the spending legislation.
“We’re talking about an invasion of our country,” Trump said.
The President also stated that he is certain that there will be a legal fight that will be even taken to the Supreme Court.
“We will have a national emergency, and we will then be sued,” Trump said, adding that the federal appeals courts could well rule against his administration. “Then we’ll end up in the Supreme Court, and hopefully we’ll get a fair shake, and we’ll win at the Supreme Court — just like the [travel] ban.”
The White House is expected to allocate $8 billion in currently appropriated or available funds toward building the wall. Out of that $3 billion could be diverted with the help of the national emergency declaration.
The money includes about $600 million from the Treasury Department’s forfeiture fund as well as the drug interdiction money from the Department of Defense.
The Defense Department’s military construction budget would also be stripper off of $3.5 billion.
The move by the President is expected to initiate a harsh legal battle and has already prompted fierce opposition from the Democrats in Congress.
“This is plainly a power grab by a disappointed President, who has gone outside the bounds of the law to try to get what he failed to achieve in the constitutional legislative process,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement. “The President’s actions clearly violate the Congress’s exclusive power of the purse, which our Founders enshrined in the Constitution.”
They vowed Congress would “defend our constitutional authorities in the Congress, in the Courts, and in the public, using every remedy available.”
“The President’s declaration of a national emergency would be an abuse of his constitutional oath and an affront to the separation of powers. Congress has the exclusive power of the purse, and the Constitution specifically prohibits the President from spending money that has not been appropriated. … This is a gross abuse of power that cannot be tolerated,” House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., said in a statement.