Last night President Trump vetoed a bipartisan measure aimed at overturning Trump’s ‘national emergency’ declaration that has led to $3.6 billion in military projects approved by Congress being redirected to border wall construction.
According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice:
Trump is thumbing his nose at the Constitution, at the military, at the Congress, and the nation in order to build a costly, ineffective and offensive border wall. The nation opposes it, the House of Representatives opposes it, the Senate opposes it, and a federal judge in Texas just ruled against it. But Trump demands it and the Supreme Court has enabled it, leaving our constitutional separation of powers in tatters.
Our nation is at a perilous crossroads. The world’s oldest democracy has a President more determined in hanging onto political power than in respecting the Constitution. The Founding Fathers gave Congress the power of the purse, and earlier this year, following a 35-day government shutdown over this issue, Congress imposed significant restrictions of border barrier funding. They approved money for the repair and rebuilding current fencing, not the construction of a border wall. We had a nationwide debate on this precise issue, and Trump lost, badly.
But Trump respects neither the constitutional separation of powers nor our democratic norms. Trump thinks he’s above the law and can rule as a monarch. So he misuses an authority reserved for national emergencies and gets the Supreme Court to greenlight his abuse of power. This brazen maneuver compromises our national security so that Trump can advance his reelection prospects. But Mexico isn’t paying for the wall, taxpayers are. Congress didn’t approve the funding, Trump raided it from military appropriations. Members of Congress from both parties have stood up to the President’s national security declaration, but the Supreme Court did not. And now, while some Republicans have stood up for the Constitution and our military families, not enough of them have.
As a result, our democracy remains threatened by a lawless President and a party that enables him.