GOP lawmaker blasts Trump: ‘The president is violating’ Constitution with emergency declaration

GOP Rep. Justin Amash (Mich.) on Sunday denounced President Trump‘s emergency declaration to fund a border wall, saying that  violated the Constitution by moving forward with the executive action.

“I think the president is violating our constitutional system. And I don’t think Congress can grant legislative powers to the president by statute,” Amash said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “You can’t just pass a statute that says, ‘The president now has appropriations power’ and bypass Congress. I don’t think that’s allowed under our constitutional system.”

Asked if he thought Republicans supporting this declaration were abdicating their responsibilities to the Constitution, Amash said “yes.”

“I don’t think that they’re all intending to do that,” he added. “I think many of them are trying to make legal arguments. They say, well, Congress has passed legislation giving the president this power. I don’t think that they’re thinking to themselves, ‘oh I just want the president to violate the Constitution.’ “

But Amash said Congress is the best check on executive action and that the body had to “protect” its own “power.”

Trump declared a national emergency last month after Congress passed a spending bill without the $5.7 billion he demanded for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

But his emergency declaration has faced opposition from many House and Senate lawmakers. Thirteen Republicans, including Amash, bucked leadership last week and voted with House Democrats for a resolution blocking the executive order.

Sen. Rand Paul (Ky.) on Saturday became the fourth GOP senator to say he’d support the resolution, clinching a bipartisan majority in the upper chamber.

GOP Sens. Susan Collins (Maine), Thom Tillis (N.C.) and Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) have already said they would vote for the resolution.

Trump has said he would veto the resolution of disapproval if it reached his desk.

 

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