National emergency declaration may mean court battle
WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) -Breaking news now as Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell says President Trump will sign the new spending bill once it passes through congress which could be later Thursday night but that the president would also declare a national emergency.
That would avoid a government shutdown but that hardly means the controversy would be over.
The president’s work to find more money for a border barrier, and emergency declaration, could lead to new set of challenges.
“We have options that most people don't really understand," President Trump said this week based on the fact the current spending bill falls about $4 billion short of his demands for border barrier construction.
There are discussions he may pull cash from DHS, Treasury or other existing accounts.
To really no one’s surprise, there’s conflict in the halls of congress about that too, whether the president has the authority and how strongly it would be challenged.
Sen. Mark Warner, D-V.a, told correspondent Scott Thuman Thursday, “I frankly think he’ll end up in court. There are laws and rules and regulations that no one in this country is above the law, even President Trump." So will democrats challenge it, Thuman asked. "Listen, I think there will be legal challenges but let’s talk about that after we get this legislation signed.”
Although there could already be some financial wiggle room, according to Rep. Will Hurd, R-Texas. "In this package it gives the OMB and the executive branch the ability to reprogram about $750 million worth of DHS funding and so that’s an area, where, that could be potentially used.”
Though he says, tapping into those resources or the president using his authority to declare a national emergency, is, "...an incredibly bad idea and something that is going to get caught up in the courts.”
Some on the hill, hint this allotment of about $1.7 billion for fencing but not a wall may be just the beginning.
"This is only a down payment. This is not a panacea," is the context Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Alabama, felt the president would interpret.
On that idea, Warner mused “anything that doesn’t spark Mr. Trump throwing another temper tantrum I think moves us in the right direction.”