Republican Senator Blasts ‘Dubious Constitutionality’ of Donald Trump’s Emergency Declaration
Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) said Tuesday she is “strongly opposed” to President Donald Trump’s latest effort to reroute taxpayer funds for the erection of his desired wall along the US-Mexico border.
Trump declared a national emergency last Friday despite no evidence of an immigration crisis. Following his dizzying announcement in the Rose Garden, the president absconded to Mar-a-Lago where he waited in line for an omelet.
“I am strongly opposed to the president invoking his national emergency powers. I don’t believe that’s what the law was intended to cover,” Collins told News Center Maine.
Collins expressed frustration over Trump “repurposing billions of dollars that were approved by Congress for other projects.” Trump’s decision “completely undermines the role of Congress, the appropriations process, and I believe is of dubious constitutionality,” Collins opined.
Collins said Trump should “work with Congress through the normal appropriations process” if he desires “more funding for a wall.”
Collins also voiced support for a lawsuit filed by sixteen states that challenges the legality of Trump’s national emergency declaration.
“I support the lawsuit that has been brought and I believe this was an unwise decision by the president,” Collins said, predicting the courts will find that Trump has overstepped his authority.
“I would not be at all surprised if the courts find that the president’s action is contrary to the separation of powers in our Constitution under Article I,” Collins added. “It is the Congress that has the right to control the purse, to appropriate funds.”
Collins does not “think under the Constitution that [Trump] can unilaterally decide to move these funds which were legally appropriated from one project to another,” noting that “unless there are grounds under the National Emergency Act, which usually cover catastrophic events” such as 9-11 or natural disasters.
Collins is joined by nine other GOP Senators who have openly disapproved of Trump’s attempted usurpation of Congressional power.