President Donald Trump on Friday vetoed a measure to terminate his emergency declaration to fund a border wall, striking back at Republican and Democratic lawmakers who opposed the controversial move with the first veto of his presidency.
Lee proposed a version of the resolution that would have restricted future emergency declarations while grandfathering in Trump's, but he couldn't reach a compromise agreement with the White House, and the plan fizzled.
The Republican-controlled U.S. Senate voted to end his border emergency declaration, with 12 of Trump's fellow Republicans joining Democrats.
"Congress has the freedom to pass this resolution and I have the duty to veto it".
"Today I am vetoing this resolution", said Trump.
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To overturn Trump's veto, at least two-thirds of both the Senate and House of Representatives would need to vote to do so.
The president wants to use the emergency order to divert billions of federal dollars earmarked for defence spending towards the southern border wall.
The veto would be the first of Trump's presidency. Almost all have noted that future Democratic presidents would exploit Trump's action and declare their own national emergencies to fulfill campaign promises.
Up to $3.6 billion reallocated from Department of Defense military construction projects under the President's declaration of a national emergency (Title 10 United States Code, section 2808). Rarely have we had such a national emergency.
"The House and Senate resoundingly rejected the president's lawless power grab, yet the president has chosen to continue to defy the Constitution, the Congress and the will of the American people", she said in a statement.
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A Justice Department letter to congressional leaders details the legal arguments defending the Trump emergency declaration, arguing that the president was authorized to do so by the National Emergencies Act passed by Congress in 1976.
Alexander added that he shares the president's goal of border security, but warned allowing Trump to redirect money without authorization could set a unsafe precedent.
Following the veto, the resolution will return to the House.
Despite the embarrassing defections, Trump's grip on the party remains strong and the White House made it clear that Republicans resisting Trump could face political consequences.
"Many such emergencies dealt with matters less threatening than the ongoing crisis on the southern border".
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