February 18, 2019

Duckworth Says Senate Has Enough Votes to Rescind Trump's National Emergency

Source: Military.com


Sen. Tammy Duckworth says her colleagues are prepared to block President Trump's declaration of a national emergency, which he celebrated at the golf course a day after the announcement.

Duckworth (D-Ill.) said Sunday on "This Week" that she believes there are enough votes in the Senate to override the President's declaration, which he made Friday in order to designate an additional $6.5 billion for his border wall.

"Frankly, I think there's enough people in the Senate who are concerned that what he's doing is robbing from the military and the (Defense Department) to go build his wall," Duckworth told host Martha Raddatz.

Congress can rescind a presidential emergency declaration with a joint resolution, but Trump would almost certainly veto that. Congress could override his veto with a two-thirds majority in both the House and the Senate.

Democrats have already vowed to stop Trump's so-called emergency, including Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics, a prominent government watchdog group that filed a lawsuit Friday claiming that the Justice Department had not provided proper legal backing.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) also promised to put forth a bill to block Trump's order, while House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) urged Republicans to stand up to the "unlawful declaration."

Duckworth admitted that it's unclear if Democrats would be able to get the two-thirds majority, calling a veto override a "different story." But she insisted that the national emergency declaration and Trump's plan to take money from other departments, particularly after promising that Mexico would pay, is "really not the best way to fight the crisis that he's talking about at the border."

"If he wants to appropriate more money to put folks...more agents at the border to put more people at the ports of entry, to go after counter-drug, we can have those conversations," Duckworth, an Iraq War veteran and member of the Armed Services Committee, said on "This Week."

"But to take money away from defense, from DOD, in order to build this wall that is essentially a campaign promise, I think is really wrong priorities and I think it's very harmful to the country."

By:  Kate Feldman