18 February, 2019
The White House has defended President Donald Trumps declaration of a national emergency at the southern border with Mexico and sought to clarify his contradictory statements about its necessity, amid mounting legal challenges and objections from Congress.
The declaration of national emergencies is a routine decision that has been made by all presidents at some point throughout their respective tenures, but the reason behind Trump's decision drastically contrasts those that preceded him.
To bridge the gap, Trump announced that he will be spending roughly $8 billion on border protection - combining the money approved by Congress with funding he plans to repurpose through executive actions, including the national emergency.
Xavier Becerra, the attorney general of California, told ABC his state would be filing a lawsuit against the project "definitely, and imminently". Democratic members of Congress are preparing a joint resolution to repeal the national emergency in the coming weeks, and are expecting some Republicans will cross the aisle to pass it. House Democrats aim to introduce legislation to block the national emergency claim, yet they will require votes from House Republicans, of which there are several who have sided with the Democrats in critiquing the President's move.
When Wallace countered with government statistics that showed attempted border crossings were actually at the lowest levels they had been in almost four decades and that the overwhelming majority of drugs were caught at ports of entry, Miller demurred.
"There's no question that presidents have the authority to declare a national emergency", Panetta said.
Trump centered much of his successful 2016 campaign for the White House on a vow to build the wall and make Mexico pay for it.
"Sadly, we'll be sued and sadly it will go through a process and happily we'll win, I think", said Trump.
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"He's hoping that he can count on a conservative court in the Supreme Court to give him a victory because he knows he's going to lose all the way up the ladder of the courts ― the federal court system".
Miller complained that President George W. Bush failed to protect American citizens against immigrants crossing the border illegally.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a government ethics watchdog based in Washington D.C., already has filed suit against the Department of Justice for failing to provide documents outlining the legal authority of Trump's emergency declaration.
He said immigrants were coming to the USA more "than probably we've ever had before".
None other than Ann Coulter declared on Friday, "The only national emergency is that our president is an idiot". This prompted Wallace to identify how Trump's recent invoking of a national emergency was different from the other occasions when that law was cited.
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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said during the partial government shutdown that "the wall is an immorality" and, jokingly said that she only have $1 to spare out of the $5.7 billion that president Trump have requested. "Can you name one case where a president has asked Congress for money, Congress has refused, and the president has then invoked national powers to get the money anyway?" Opponents of the declaration also are certain to use Mr Trump's own words at his Rose Garden news conference to argue that there is no emergency on the border.
He says that national emergency has been signed by many presidents of the nation previously.