On Tuesday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her fellow Democrats forced a successful vote to terminate President Trump national emergency declaration at the border.
For weeks, Pelosi and many of her Democratic colleagues have claimed there is no crisis at the southern border. Many of them similarly argued that there was no need for a border wall.
The House of Representatives voted 245-182 to pass the resolution to terminate Pres. Trump's National Emergency proclamation to build the border wall. https://t.co/7ZGVvAKRRX pic.twitter.com/ldgF6AzuPz
— ABC News (@ABC) February 27, 2019
“The House voted Tuesday to pass a resolution to terminate President Donald Trump’s national emergency proclamation to build the border wall, presenting their opening salvo in a battle that’s expected to drag into the next presidential campaign, both in the courts and on Capitol Hill,” ABC News reports.
By a vote of 245 to 182, Democrats had 13 of their Republican colleagues join in support.
“We would be delinquent in our duties if we did not resist, if we did not fight back to overturn the president’s declaration. To not do that would be to abandon our own responsibilities. We do not intend to do that,” Pelosi said ahead of the vote. “What the president is saying about the border is mythology. It’s not reality, but this is not about the wall. Whatever you think about the wall, think about the Constitution of the United States.”
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer similarly rejected that there was a crisis at the border.
“There is no crisis at the border,” Hoyer contended. “The issue [Tuesday] will be whether there is a crisis of our constitutional adherence, whether there is a crisis because there is a lack of conscience and courage among the members of the House of Representatives and subsequently the United States Senate to stand up for what the Founding Fathers wanted. They did not want King George.”
Ahead of the vote, only one Republican openly criticized the president’s action: Republican Justin Amash.
“Behind the scenes, privately, many of them [Republicans] are very concerned about what the president is doing. And they understand our constitutional system and they would, I think, love the opportunity to oppose him,” Amash said, per ABC News. “They have that opportunity here, and I think they’re not going to take it for political purposes. They’re worried about what might happen back home with Republican voters.”
“The president doesn’t get to just declare an emergency for something Congress has deliberated many times over the past several years. The president signed legislation that Congress passed that did not have the funding he wanted. He didn’t veto the legislation. You can’t not veto the legislation and then say there’s an emergency,” Amash added. “You should have vetoed it in the first place. You have to make sure each branch stays in its own lane.”
The Democratic-led effort was supported by more than a dozen Republicans as the bill will be sent off to the Senate, where Republicans are the majority party.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell initially agreed to support the national emergency declaration in exchange for Trump to sign into law a federal funding bill. He seemed to backtrack this support when he said he had not yet “reached a total conclusion” on the order and its legality.
Republican members of the Senate may also support the measure to overturn Trump’s order, should it receive a vote in the Senate.
From ABC News:
Even Senate Republicans have been questioning the president’s authority in declaring a national emergency.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell described what he called a “robust and vigorous” discussion during a private lunch on Tuesday with Vice President Mike Pence and a Department of Justice lawyer who briefed Senate Republicans on the president’s emergency declaration.
“I haven’t reached a total conclusion,” McConnell said when he was asked if he considered the president’s move to be a legal one. “What is not in doubt is we have a serious crisis at the border, and our colleagues across the aisle are in denial.”
Among these Republican members who may vote to overturn Trump’s declaration include Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski.
“I want to make sure that the resolution of disapproval is exactly what I think it is, because if it is as I understand it to be, I will likely be supporting the resolution to disapprove of the action,” she said, as TownHall reports.
The report adds:
Note: The author of this article has included commentary that expresses an opinion and analysis of the facts.
She joins her usual partner-in-crime, Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), who was the first Republican senator to announce she’d vote for the measure to condemn Trump’s emergency.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) has not indicated his vote, but like other GOP colleagues has shared his concerns about Trump’s action and whether a more liberal president would take advantage of his or her executive powers as well. For instance, does this mean a President Ocasio-Cortez could declare an emergency for the Green New Deal?