Trump vetoes lawmakers' measure against border wall

Arturo Kim
March 16, 2019

"Congress has the freedom to pass this resolution", Trump said, "and I have the duty to veto it".

President Donald Trump has vetoed a measure from Congress that revoked his declaration of a national emergency at the US-Mexico border.

People hate the word "invasion", but that's what it is - it's an invasion of drugs, and criminals, and people.

In the Oval Office at the White House on Friday afternoon, Trump said "our immigration system is stretched beyond the breaking point" and called the congressional action "dangerous" and "reckless".

Twelve Republicans joined Democrats in the Senate to pass the measure, concerned that the president had overstepped his authority.

The White House had lobbied heavily for Republicans to back Trump, despite concerns among some about executive overreach and precedent-setting action that a future Democratic president could copy on policies that Republicans oppose. But for those who broke from party ranks to vote for the termination resolution, the president said they were "doing what they have to do", adding that he did not pressure them for their vote.

Thursday's vote was the first direct challenge to the 1976 National Emergencies Act, just as a Wednesday vote on Yemen was the first time Congress invoked the decades-old War Powers Act to try to rein in a president.

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Mr Trump had declared the emergency in February after Congress refused his requests for $5.7bn (£4.4bn) to construct a border wall - a campaign promise.

Indeed, Trump had telegraphed his plan to proceed with additional wall spending on Thursday, minutes after the Senate voted 59-41 to block it.

"The President has chosen to continue to defy the Constitution, the Congress and the will of the American people", she said.

The veto would be the first of Donald Trump's presidency.

Trump tweeted about the political advantage he expects those who supported him will receive. "I thank all of the Strong Republicans who voted to support Border Security and our desperately needed WALL!"

If he [the president] approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. "I didn't need the vote because we all knew it would be a veto and they're not going to be able to override". "I think the value of these last few weeks is to remind the Senate of our constitutional place".

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