It’s been a good week for President Trump, and Tuesday made things even sweeter for him. In response to the Democrats’ attempt at blocking his emergency declaration at the southern border, President Trump issued a veto, which the House of Representatives failed to override on Tuesday. According to The Hill, the vote to override the president’s veto was 248-181, which caused it to fall short of the two-thirds majority vote of 287 that was required for it to pass.
The vote was predominantly along party lines, but 14 Republicans chose to side with the Democrats. The Republicans who voted against Trump disputed that he was violating his constitutional authority by reappropriating funds that went above and beyond the designated amount set aside by Congress to construct the border barrier.
According to The Hill, before the vote was made Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick said to CNN: “We all agree with the need for border security so I want to be clear on that, but we need to separate out the need for border security with how we get there and there are constitutional concerns here.”
Despite the fact that Congress voted to authorize $1.375 billion to fund the border wall, the White House still plans on redirecting $3.6 billion from a construction fund for the military, as well as, $2.5 billion from the Department of Defense’s drug interdiction program, and $600 million from the Treasury Department’s drug forfeiture fund. Trump’s national emergency was declared in order to take money from the $3.6 billion military construction fund.
According to the Military Times, acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan made the announcement on Monday Night that he had authorized the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to spend up to $1 billion in support of Trump’s request “to build 57 miles of 18-foot-high pedestrian fencing, constructing and improving roads, and installing lighting within the Yuma and El Paso Sectors of the border.”
The courts are also giving Trump’s emergency declaration a hard time. Just last month, 16 different states filed lawsuits against Trump in the federal court in the Northen District of California in an attempt to block his declaration, which didn’t come as a surprise to Trump.
At the time, Trump explained that he believed that his declaration would stand still in the courts, just like his travel ban did. “We will have a national emergency and we will then be sued, and they will sue us in the 9th Circuit, even though it shouldn’t be there, and we will possibly get a bad ruling and then we’ll get another bad ruling and then we’ll end up in the Supreme Court, and hopefully we’ll get a fair shake, and we’ll win in the Supreme Court,” he said.
Trump has justified his declaration by saying that there has been a dramatic increase in the number of illegal drugs, migrants, and gang-related criminal activity at the southern border.
According to Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, her department is on the right track to prevent 100,000 migrants from crossing the southern border in March.
While speaking at Auburn University’s Center for Cyber and Homeland Security, Nielsen said: “The situation at our southern border has gone from a crisis to a national emergency to a near-systemwide meltdown.” She added: “I say this with the utmost sincerity and urgency: The system is breaking.”