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US NewsTrump administration lays groundwork to declare national emergency to build wall

10:30  11 january  2019
10:30  11 january  2019 Source:   washingtonpost.com

Trump digs in on wall during surprise appearance

Trump digs in on wall during surprise appearance Donald Trump has used a surprise appearance at a White House news briefing to say he has "never had so much support" for his plan to build a wall on the Mexico border. Mr Trump asserted it was essential to keep out illegal immigrants, amid a row over its funding which has led to a partial government shutdown in the US. "You can call it a barrier - you can call it whatever you want - but essentially we need protection in our country," said Mr Trump. "We're going to make it good. The people of our country want it.

“We can declare a national emergency . We shouldn’t have to because this is common sense,” Trump told reporters as he visited Trump repeatedly has said Mexico would pay for the wall . The president and members of his administration have been depicting a humanitarian and public safety crisis at the

Trump administration officials made an urgent case Monday that the situation at the U.S.-Mexico border has reached a crisis level, laying the groundwork for President Trump to possibly declare a national emergency that would empower him to construct a border wall without congressional

Trump administration lays groundwork to declare national emergency to build wall © Getty The White House has begun laying the groundwork for a declaration of national emergency to build President Trump’s border wall, a move certain to set off a firestorm of opposition in Congress and the courts but one that could pave the way for an end to the three-week government shutdown.

The administration is eyeing unused money in the Army Corps of Engineers budget, specifically a disaster spending bill passed by Congress last year that includes $13.9 billion allocated but not spent for civil works projects, two people with knowledge of the developments said Thursday.

Trump has urged the Army Corps to determine how fast contracts could be signed and whether construction could begin within 45 days, according to one of the people who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the preparations.

Trump says he is considering calling a national emergency to build the wall

Trump says he is considering calling a national emergency to build the wall President Trump may call a national emergency to fund the border wall if he is unable to get sufficient funds from Congress

So, Trump could build an emergency wall ? It is technically possible. However, Mr Trump 's opponents and civil liberties groups are unlikely to submit to it without If Mr Trump goes ahead with declaring a national emergency , it would be the fourth of his administration . Some uses were for issues like the

Trump could theoretically use the National Emergencies Act of 1976 to declare an emergency , activating executive authorities including the reprogramming We can call a national emergency and build it very quickly. It's another way of doing it." In private conversations with advisers at a Sunday

The list includes dozens of flood control projects in areas affected by recent natural disasters, including the Texas coastline inundated by Hurricane Harvey and parts of Puerto Rico battered by Hurricane Maria. The military construction budget is also being looked at as a potential source for unspent funds, with billions more potentially available there.

The preparations are taking place with talks at an impasse over Trump’s demands for $5.7 billion to construct more than 200 miles of wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Democrats are staunchly opposed, leading to a partial government shutdown that on Saturday will become the longest in U.S. history.

Some 800,000 federal workers are about to miss their first paychecks since the shutdown began Dec. 22, and problems plaguing shuttered national parks, food inspection processes and other federal services are multiplying.

Trump ramps up attacks on media: ‘Crazed lunatics’

Trump ramps up attacks on media: ‘Crazed lunatics’ President Trump on Monday ramped up his attacks against the press, calling the media "crazed lunatics" that have "given up on the TRUTH." Trump also said in a trio of tweets that the "Fake News" has "never been worse" and accused members of the press of intentionally making up stories to make him and his administration look bad. "With all of the success that our Country is having, including the just released jobs numbers which are off the charts, the Fake News & totally dishonest Media concerning me and my presidency has never been worse.

So, Trump could build an emergency wall ? It is technically possible. However, Mr Trump 's opponents and civil liberties groups are unlikely to submit without a If Mr Trump goes ahead with declaring a national emergency , it would be the fourth of his administration . Some uses were for issues like the

Trump is building public support for declaring a national emergency to protect America’s borders. In taking this humanitarian approach to the border wall crisis, President Trump appears measured and careful in his actions. He realizes that any national emergency will be more effective if it is declared

The Senate unanimously passed legislation Thursday that would guarantee back pay to furloughed federal workers once the shutdown ends, although thousands of government contractors who have been furloughed may never recoup their losses.

Trump, who walked out of a White House negotiating session Wednesday after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) refused to agree to pay for his wall, reiterated Thursday that he may declare a national emergency if Democrats don’t give him what he wants.

Trump administration lays groundwork to declare national emergency to build wall © AP People record with their phones in front of the border wall Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019, along the beach in Tijuana, Mexico.

“Now if we don’t make a deal with Congress, most likely I will do that,” Trump said to Fox News host Sean Hannity about an emergency declaration in an interview that aired Thursday night. “I would actually say I would. I can’t imagine any reason why not because I’m allowed to do it. The law is 100 percent on my side.”

Donald Trump to visit US-Mexico border as government shutdown continues

Donald Trump to visit US-Mexico border as government shutdown continues Donald Trump will visit the US-Mexico border on Thursday as the White House continues to attempt to focus attention to on a “crisis” at the border. The announcement comes as the US government shut down enters its third week with Trump and congressional Democrats at an impasse over Trump’s demand for nearly $6 billion in federal funding to build a wall on the southern border. CNN reports White House officials said Trump also asked aides over the weekend about delivering a prime time address on Tuesday.

Trump could theoretically use the National Emergencies Act of 1976 to declare an emergency , activating executive authorities including the reprogramming of some Defence Department funds. Trump first mentioned the possibility of declaring a national emergency on Friday, telling reporters

No ‘ Emergency ’ Will Allow Trump to Build His Wall . There’s no escape clause in the Constitution President Donald Trump has said that he can declare a national emergency and order his border wall to He is expected to lay the groundwork for such a declaration in a prime-time address Tuesday.

The president and members of his administration have been depicting a humanitarian and public safety crisis at the border, focusing on drugs flowing into the United States and violence by unauthorized immigrants. There was a significant uptick in border apprehensions in 2018, according to data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, especially of immigrant families, but border apprehensions remain much lower than the high levels seen in the 1980s through the 2000s.

Asked about a timetable for a national emergency declaration, the president said he would see how it goes with Congress.

But on Capitol Hill there were no signs of progress, and instead lawmakers of both parties were bracing for Trump to declare a national emergency. Democrats were exploring their options on how to respond.

Related: Trump visits border wall in Texas (Photos)

Democratic staffers from leadership offices and relevant committees met Thursday afternoon to discuss a potential response. According to an attendee, the meeting focused on undercutting any case that the border situation constituted a national emergency under the legal definition, and highlighting projects that might be put at risk if Trump were to raid other accounts to fund the wall.

House Democratic leadership staff has explored the possibility of a lawsuit against the administration. Although no final determinations have been made, the current thinking is that Congress probably would not have standing to sue, according to a leadership aide.

State attorneys general or people directly affected by a border wall — such as landowners who have property along the U.S.-Mexico boundary — would probably have to file the lawsuit, and the House could file a friend-of-the-court brief.

Pelosi declined to say how the House would respond to a national emergency declaration when questioned at a news conference Thursday.

“If and when the president does that, you’ll find out how we will react,” Pelosi said. “But I think the president will have problems on his own side of the aisle for exploiting the situation in a way that enhances his power.”

Indeed, a number of Republicans have expressed qualms or outright opposition about Trump declaring a national emergency, including members of the House Armed Services Committee who object to the prospect of the administration targeting funds within the Pentagon’s military construction budget.

Others cautioned against the administration taking executive action on an issue that should be Congress’s purview.

Trump equates illegal immigrants with paedophiles in attempt to justify need for border wall

Trump equates illegal immigrants with paedophiles in attempt to justify need for border wall Donald Trump has claimed that thousands of illegal immigrants who have sexually abused children are currently in prisons in Texas, upping his rhetoric as he seeks to justify funding for his border wall. Mr Trump was quoting John Jones of the Texas Department for Public Safety (DPS). Late last week, Mr Jones appeared at an immigration roundtable at the White House and said that more than 4,000 have been incarcerated for sexual assault in the last seven years. “Sixty-two per cent of them are sexual assault against children.

had considered declaring a national emergency to circumvent Congress and start construction on the rest of President Trump ’s border wall , President After saying that the federal government could use eminent domain to secure the land for the wall , Trump responded to a question about using his

“It’s not the way to do it. I can understand why they’re looking at it,” said Rep. Mike Simpson (R-Idaho). “I don’t like the idea of pulling money out of defense and military construction and the Army Corps of Engineers. That’s not a good option.”

Asked Thursday whether she would support Trump invoking national security powers to start wall construction, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), an Appropriations Committee member, replied: “No.”

Dan Eberhart, a GOP donor who is often supportive of Trump, said, “Weaponizing a national emergency to achieve a policy objective is usually something that happens in banana republics, not George Washington’s republic.”

But other Republicans were ready for Trump to take the step.

Trump administration lays groundwork to declare national emergency to build wall © Getty

In a statement Thursday, Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) accused Pelosi of intransigence that has brought talks to an end, and said that “it is time for President Trump to use emergency powers to fund the construction of a border wall/barrier.”

“I hope it works,” Graham added.

“There’s no question, it’s perfectly legal,” said Rep. Douglas A. Collins (R-Ga.). “I wish we didn’t have to.”

While most Democrats said Trump would be acting recklessly and illegally if he declared a national emergency, some were open to the approach.

“Honestly I would be glad, because then it would get shut down in court and we could move on,” said Rep. Katie Hill (D-Calif.), a freshman who unseated a Republican in a swing suburban district. “Hopefully he figures that out pretty quick.”

One Democratic aide called an emergency declaration an “elegant way out of this mess” — one that would allow Trump and Republicans to declare to their most fervent supporters that they had taken Democrats to the brink, while Democrats would quickly move to tie up any construction in the courts.

The House and Senate could move quickly to pass a bill to reopen the government, predicated on assurances from Trump that he would sign the legislation.

However, conservative Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), who talks frequently with Trump, cautioned that a declaration of a national emergency would not necessarily lead to reopening the government.

Many Democrats also say that an emergency declaration would benefit them politically by unifying their party while splitting Republicans, creating unease among some conservatives who have expressed discomfort with a president sidestepping Congress in a way they might see as similar to how President Barack Obama circumvented Congress on immigration.

The president has various powers to act unilaterally, some claimed as inherent in the Constitution, others specifically delegated by Congress. On Capitol Hill, most lawmakers and aides are anticipating a declaration under the 1976 National Emergencies Act, which set out a formal process for declaring an emergency — and for Congress revoking it.

To override an emergency declaration, both houses of Congress would have to pass a resolution doing so and present it to Trump for his signature — one he would presumably veto.

The administration can expect a flood of court challenges if it proposes to build a wall without explicit congressional authorization. Indeed, a number of organizations are preparing for litigation, just waiting to see exactly what the president does.

“The use of emergency powers to build a wall is unlawful, and we are prepared to sue as needed,” said Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the American Civil Liberties Union Immigrants’ Rights Project, which has helped obtain dozens of court orders blocking Trump administration immigration policies.

“There’s going to be a lot of lawsuits,” said Brian Segee, senior attorney for the Center for Biological Diversity. “We are preparing” for possible litigation now, he said.

Even as the discussions over a national emergency declaration were taking place, a final glimmer of hope for a way out of the impasse was extinguished when Graham declared talks over among a small group of Republican senators who had been meeting to discuss some kind of broader deal to end the shutdown.

These deal-minded Senate Republicans had shuttled Thursday morning between meetings with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Vice President Pence, batting around a proposal that would include Trump’s desired $5.7 billion in wall funding, and a renewable, three-year status for certain immigrants brought illegally to the country as children, along with other provisions.

But by midafternoon Thursday, Pence poured cold water on the idea, telling reporters at the Capitol that Trump wanted to wait on trying to make a deal for “dreamers” until the Supreme Court had ruled on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, the Obama-era program that granted protections to these immigrants.

Graham was glum afterward about where things stood, saying he has “never been more depressed about moving forward than right now.” Not long after that he issued his statement backing a national emergency declaration.

At the same time, House Democrats pressed forward with their strategy of passing individual spending bills to reopen portions of the federal government that have been closed in the shutdown.

The House on Thursday passed two more spending bills that would open parts of the government that have nothing to do with border security, largely with Democratic votes. A handful of Republicans joined Democrats in supporting those bills — 12 for a bill funding the departments of Transportation and Housing and Urban Development, and 10 for a bill funding the Agriculture Department, the Food and Drug Administration and other agencies.

But Trump has made clear he would veto these bills, and McConnell has said repeatedly that he will not bring up any legislation that doesn’t have Trump’s support.

“There’s no wall, there’s no deal,” Pence told reporters on Capitol Hill.


Trump equates illegal immigrants with paedophiles in attempt to justify need for border wall.
Donald Trump has claimed that thousands of illegal immigrants who have sexually abused children are currently in prisons in Texas, upping his rhetoric as he seeks to justify funding for his border wall. Mr Trump was quoting John Jones of the Texas Department for Public Safety (DPS). Late last week, Mr Jones appeared at an immigration roundtable at the White House and said that more than 4,000 have been incarcerated for sexual assault in the last seven years. “Sixty-two per cent of them are sexual assault against children.

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