Politics: ‘It will create a firestorm’: Mulvaney’s border wall cash grab sparks dissent in White House - PressFrom - US

Politics‘It will create a firestorm’: Mulvaney’s border wall cash grab sparks dissent in White House

03:05  12 february  2019
03:05  12 february  2019 Source:   politico.com

Trump golfs with Mulvaney at Florida club

Trump golfs with Mulvaney at Florida club President Trump played golf with acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney on Sunday, the White House said, the second consecutive day the president spent at his West Palm Beach, Fla. club. 

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Despite Trump’ s campaign promise that Mexico will pay for a border wall , it will be funded by taxpayers like you. To fund the wall , the White House has proposed major spending cuts to national security, disaster relief, health, labor, education, emergency response, environmental protection, and

‘It will create a firestorm’: Mulvaney’s border wall cash grab sparks dissent in White House© Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images To avoid a national emergency, acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and top budget officials have proposed shifting money from two Army Corps of Engineers’ flood control projects in Northern California, as well as from disaster relief funds intended for California and Puerto Rico.

The White House is firming up plans to redirect unspent federal dollars as a way of funding President Donald Trump’s border wall without taking the dramatic step of invoking a national emergency.

Done by executive order, this plan would allow the White House to shift money from different budgetary accounts without congressional approval, circumventing Democrats who refuse to give Trump anything like the $5.7 billion he has demanded. Nor would it require a controversial emergency declaration.

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The House added Trump' s wall funding by a 230-196 procedural vote earlier in the day that denied angry Democrats an up-or-down vote. "Every single dime the President requested to start building a wall on our southern border he' s going to get," said House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.

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The emerging consensus among acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and top budget officials is to shift money from two Army Corps of Engineers’ flood control projects in Northern California, as well as from disaster relief funds intended for California and Puerto Rico. The plan will also tap unspent Department of Defense funds for military construction, like family housing or infrastructure for military bases, according to three sources familiar with the negotiations.

“There are certain sums of money that are available to the president, to any president,” Mulvaney said on Meet the Press Sunday. “So you comb through the law at the president's request…. And there's pots of money where presidents, all presidents, have access to without a national emergency.”

Trump is likely to sign any border deal. He’s planning to build a wall regardless.

Trump is likely to sign any border deal. He’s planning to build a wall regardless. “We’ll figure out a way to do it with executive authority.” A national emergency is still on the table, too, though Mulvaney said they’re looking for options that won’t get tangled up in court. Such a move would infuriate Congress, including Republicans, who would see it as Trump ignoring that they’re supposed to be equal branches of government. Trump has never really believed Congress would give him the money. He cast doubts on the conference committee’s ability to succeed from the start. But Trump also knows, despite some threats to the contrary, that there’s no upside to another shutdown.

A GoFundMe page titled We The People Will Fund The Wall was created Sunday. A crowdfunding campaign to build a wall on the southern border had raised million in just four days by Thursday. The 37-year-old triple-amputee created the GoFundMe account titled We The People Will Fund The

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But the strategy is far from a cure-all for a president with no good options, and it has already sparked debate within the White House. Moving funds by executive order is virtually certain to draw instant court challenges, with opponents, including some powerful members of Congress, arguing the president is encroaching on the legislative branch’s constitutional power to appropriate funds.

Some Trump officials, including those aligned with senior adviser Stephen Miller, have argued internally that the gambit might be even more vulnerable to court challenges than a national emergency declaration. And in a sign of the political fallout, the top Republican on the House Armed Services Committee has argued that tapping military construction money would hurt the armed forces’ potential readiness.

Until now, Trump officials had focused on the drawbacks of a possible national emergency declaration. But as the alternative option of moving money by executive order has come into clearer relief ahead of a Feb. 15 deadline for a spending deal with Congress that could avert a new government shutdown, so have the risks of that alternative option.

White House chief of staff Mulvaney won't rule out possibility of another shutdown

White House chief of staff Mulvaney won't rule out possibility of another shutdown With just days left to find a deal, the White House signaled a willingness accept wall funding that is "someplace in the middle."

The biggest problem with Donald Trump' s border wall is that it was never about border security. Could a wall be built? What would it do? Journalists from the USA TODAY NETWORK flew and This is no different. That’ s why he refused to denounce in unequivocal terms the white nationalism we saw

Democrats opposed border wall funding in the latest government spending debate and the White House eventually backed off of its demand to Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, said he was surprised that the latest spending package excluded border wall funding and said there' s only one way it will happen.

“It will create a firestorm, once you start taking money that congressmen think is in their in their districts,” said Jim Dyer, a former staff director for the House Appropriations Committee. “You will cause yourself a problem if that money was directed away from any type of project or activity because I guarantee it has some constituency on Capitol Hill.”

Inside the White House, the president’s lawyers have for weeks grappled with the question of how to defend Trump should he choose to assert broad executive powers to build the wall. While the phrase “national emergency” has an extreme ring, some administration attorneys note that it is a well-established power under a 1976 law that has been invoked 58 times by past presidents. They call it uncontroversial that presidents have broad discretion to declare a national emergencies and similarly broad authority to deal with them.

“President is on sound legal ground to declare a National Emergency… this is hardly unprecedented,” Trump tweeted on Sunday, quoting comments by Rep. Tom McClintock (R-Calif.)

Mulvaney expects action this week on White House leaks

Mulvaney expects action this week on White House leaks The Trump administration wants to know who leaked the president‘s schedules.

BUILDING THE BORDER WALL ? is an International Design Competition to re-conceptualize the border between the United States and Mexico with humane solutions for the And third place went to a pair of architects working in tandem: Caleb White in New York and Emily Gruendel in Philadelphia.

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has used metal fencing to create three monumental structures, in a campaign against Donald Trump' s border -control measures. Working with New York charity Public Art Fund , Ai has created temporary structures in three New York locations, all intended to resemble security fences.

“The appeal of the national emergency is really the hope that, by just declaring it, by mouthing the words ‘national defense,’ what they would be doing is saying to the courts, ‘Hands off, this is a military determination and you can’t touch it,’” said David French, a senior fellow at the National Review Institute and a former JAG attorney. (Trump has said he would invoke emergency powers in the name of national defense against drugs, criminals and even terrorists.)

A national emergency declaration, however, does not unlock unlimited powers and would be subject to court challenges. The White House counsel’s office has been studying two statues in detail that Trump could invoke under national emergency circumstances — and both come with problems.

One, 10 USC section 2808, authorizes military construction projects that support the use of the armed forces. Those are typically things like barracks, helipads, and other military fortifications. The other, 33 USC section 2293, allows the Secretary of the Army to redirect funds from the Army’s civil works program for projects including “authorized civil works.” White House lawyers, however, expect to be challenged about whether the wall truly supports the armed forces or is an authorized civil work.

Neither the White House press office nor a spokeswoman for the Office of Management and Budget responded to requests for comment.

What is a 'national emergency,' and how can Trump use it to fund border wall?

What is a 'national emergency,' and how can Trump use it to fund border wall? As the partial government shutdown continues, with no end in sight during the standoff over funding for a border wall, President Trump has floated the possibility of declaring an emergency to complete his oft-repeated campaign promise. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.getMedianetNativeAds(true); }); Trump has repeatedly demanded more than $5 billion for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. When he campaigned for president, he often promised Mexico would pay for the wall.

Latest news from the White House , including video, commentary, and in-depth analysis coverage. The House GOP' s campaign arm released its 55 targeted districts for 2020 on Friday, as Republicans try to narrow or overcome the chamber' s new Democratic majority.

When charges of “racism” and “xenophobia” fail, Democrats’ fallback argument against President Trump’ s proposed border wall is that it simply Another core promise made by Trump to justify constructing a massive wall spanning from Texas to California is that it will slow the flow of drugs

While White House officials still hope Congress can work out a deal to keep the government open, a bipartisan committee hit roadblocks over the weekend that dimmed hopes for a compromise, and Trump officials continue to sift through the alternatives — well aware of polls that showed Trump took most of the blame for the unpopular 35-day shutdown that began in late December.

“My guess is the president ends up using executive authority to try to re-program funds,” said one Republican close to the White House, who stressed that no one knew exactly what the president would do over the next five days. “Then, in the coming months through some form of military funds, they start building parts of the physical barrier. He can start claiming that, despite Democrats’ intransigence, he has done something on the wall.”

Another Republican close to the administration predicted that Trump would cobble together money for his wall from multiple sources. That could mean signing a congressional deal likely to include only a fraction of the $5.7 billion he seeks while supplementing it with executive action that accesses billions more.

Even if Trump decides that the legal obstacles of an executive order are less daunting that those that would come with a national emergency declaration, tapping unspent funds intended for disaster relief and military construction would bring serious political and policy risks.

By diverting disaster money intended for heavily Democratic California and Puerto Rico — instead of staunchly Republican Texas, which is still rebuilding after Hurricane Harvey — Trump opens himself up to criticism that he’s favoring red states over blue ones. Both of Texas’ GOP senators, Ted Cruz and John Cornyn, have made clear their opposition to re-programming any Harvey relief funds.

Re-directing the military funds by fiat is also more complicated than it might sound, in part because Pentagon spending typically happens slowly over long time frames.

“Given the priority this is associated with, I imagine a lot of the red tape will be expedited, but it doesn’t mean it can happen overnight. Military construction is a five-year appropriation for a reason, because these projects take a long time. Military construction is not a speedy process,” said John Conger, a former senior Obama-era Pentagon official.

Wesley Morgan, Connor O’Brien, Jennifer Scholtes, and Annie Snider contributed reporting.

White House moves forward with wall funding despite lawsuits.
The White House is moving forward with plans to shift existing federal funds to pay for construction of a wall on the southern border, a senior administration official said. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.

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