Dems tee up Tuesday vote against Trump’s emergency declaration

Cartoon by Gary Varvel - Cartoonist Gary Varvel: Nancy Pelosi

Editorial Cartoon by Gary Varvel, Indianapolis Star

House Democrats are scheduling a vote Tuesday on a resolution aimed at blocking President Trump’s national emergency declaration.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced the plan Friday on a conference call with reporters, where she framed Trump’s unilateral move as an “institutional assault” that defies the constitutionally dictated separation of powers and threatens the working of the country’s democracy.

“The president’s act is lawless and does violence to our constitution and therefore to our democracy,” she said. “We do not have a monarchy; we have a separation of powers in our country.”

Rep. Joaquin Castro’s (D-Texas) resolution, just one page long, would terminate Trump’s emergency declaration, which aims to shift money from other programs to build the president’s long promised border wall.

Defense connection: Trump declared the national emergency in hopes of tapping $3.6 billion from the military construction budget for his proposed border wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Defense hawks had warned against the using military money for the wall, saying it would harm readiness by taking away money meant to restore crumbling military infrastructure.

But as The Hill’s Mike Lillis and Scott Wong pointed out Friday morning, don’t expect many GOP defections in next week’s vote.

Only one Republican co-sponsor is on Castro’s resolution: conservative Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich).

Amash’s office said the congressman feels the situation does not qualify as a national emergency.

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