/House attempts to override President Trumps veto of national emergency resolution

House attempts to override President Trumps veto of national emergency resolution

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President Donald Trump vetoed a congressional resolution that was blocking his border wall emergency.
USA TODAY

WASHINGTON – The House is set to vote Tuesday to override President Donald Trump’s veto of a congressional resolution halting his emergency declaration for the southern border. The effort is expected to fail. 

Trump vetoed the congressional resolution earlier this month after a dozen Senate Republicans voted with Democrats to block his national emergency declaration. It was a major rebuke by Senate Republicans on one of Trump’s signature issues.

Trump declared a national emergency along the U.S.-Mexico border Feb. 15 to free up money for a wall. The decision came after Congress rejected his request for $5.7 billion to build the barrier.

As the House debated the vote, Trump was meeting with Senate Republicans across the U.S. Capitol at their weekly policy lunch.

Earlier Tuesday, Democratic leaders said they still held out hope that some Republicans would join them in overriding the bill.

“Certainly, everyone that cares about the United States Constitution, as many of my Republican colleagues profess to do, should be alarmed at this presidential overreach,” said New York Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, chairman of the House Democratic Caucus. “Pursuant to Article 1 of the Constitution, we have the power of the purse. That prerogative has been invaded by Donald Trump.”

An override attempt, however, was always expected even though Democrats knew they didn’t have the two-thirds majority required in each chamber. Only 13 Republicans joined all Democrats in backing the resolution, even though many had warned against the declaration.

Some lawmakers have raised concerns that Trump will divert funds from military projects to pay for the wall.

Last week, the administration sent a list of construction projects to Congress that the Pentagon said it could delay to fund the barrier.

The national emergency declaration allows Trumps to tap billions in military construction projects, including air traffic control towers. The projects have been approved by Congress, but contracts have not yet been signed. Pentagon officials said the projects would be delayed, not canceled.

Contributing: Maureen Groppe, Tom Vanden Brook

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