McConnell: Enough Senate votes to reject Trump's wall move

April FrancisMar 05, 2019

Rand Paul is the latest GOP lawmaker to say he can't go along with the White House on the emergency declaration.

In Monday's interview, Toomey said he supports the president's request for $5.7 billion in additional money for border construction.

Paul said that while he supported Trump and the president's "fight to get funding for the wall from Republicans and Democrats alike", he "cannot support the use of emergency powers to get more funding" and would be voting against Trump's national emergency declaration when it came before the Senate.

"I can't vote to give the President the power to spend money that hasn't been appropriated by Congress", Paul said at a Warren County Republican Party fundraising dinner, according to the newspaper.

The president's national emergency declaration, issued February 15 after Congress failed to produce the border-wall money he wants, allows him to access $3.6 billion in funds allocated for military construction projects. "If we take away those checks and balances, it 's a unsafe thing", Paul said at a Kentucky Republican party dinner, according to the Bowling Green Daily News.

The House, which is, of course, controlled by Democrats, voted in favor of the resolution to block the border wall declaration late last week, according to NPR. Overriding that veto would require 290 votes in the House-45 more than the resolution received last month-and 20 Republican votes in the Senate to reach the 67-vote threshold.

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But, the Kentucky Republican also said he anticipated the Senate would pass the measure disapproving of the border security emergency.

Paul did not address whether he believes the crisis at the border is a national emergency.

McConnell, speaking from Kentucky, said the measure will be vetoed by Trump, and then "in all likelihood" there would not be enough votes in Congress to overturn that veto.

Three other Republican senators have announced they'll vote "no" - Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Thom Tillis of North Carolina. "But Congress appropriates money, and his only constitutional recourse, if he does not like the amount they appropriate, is to veto the bill", he explained. But then he could veto the legislation, and it's unlikely that his opponents could muster the two-thirds super-majority in the House and Senate that would be needed to override his veto.

That likely will not be the end of the drama over the border wall funding, as Trump has promised to veto the disapproval resolution. The declaration is also being challenged in the courts.

"Every single Republican I know decried President Obama's use of executive power to legislate".

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