Donald Trump is getting it from all sides right about now. I can honestly say that I couldn’t wish anything better for him. With Michael Cohen’s testimony and the crimes it has uncovered distracting him, Trump hasn’t even mentioned his “national emergency.” Some Republican Senators, however, are trying to remind him that it’s still hanging out there – and more importantly they’re not planning to support him.
The most vocal of these Republicans is Lamar Alexander. Last week, he publicly called out Donald Trump: “Withdraw your national emergency declaration at the border or face a potential rebellion from the GOP.” While Alexander did not indicate whether he will be that elusive fourth vote needed from the Republican Senators, he is clear that he neither agrees with nor appreciates Trump’s “national emergency” declaration.
According to Politico, Lamar is one of 10 Republicans who might well vote against the declaration. When reporters asked Alexander how the GOP can avoid an all-out battle with Trump, an unnamed senator stated succinctly, “He can change his mind.” Even “Lyin’ Ted Cruz,” as Trump called him during the campaign, sounds reluctant to allow the national emergency declaration to proceed: “I have long believed and advocated that every president, Republican and Democrat, should act consistent with the Constitution and federal law.” As much as I hate to agree with Cruz on anything, I do in this case.
Alexander suggests an alternative to Trump: take $1.37 from the Homeland Security Appropriations Bill, $601 million from the Treasury Forfeiture fund, and $3.7 billion from the Department of Defense counter drug enforcement fund. That’s all well and good, but the vast majority of Americans don’t want a wall – period. If these funds are truly available, they should be put to better use, such as infrastructure, updated border security, real tax relief for the middle class, and I could go on.
I’m sorry, but a border wall is the least of our problems. Interestingly, Alexander is not running for reelection, so he is very free to say how he feels. The problem will be getting enough others to go along with his plan. Rand Paul says he’s voting against Trump, so that will take the resolution to Trump’s desk, where he will veto it. Then, the real Republicans who truly want to support their constituents and this country should step up and override his veto. I doubt very seriously that they have the balls to do that.
It still puzzles me why so many of them continue to support Donald Trump, including those who support him with their silence. But Alexander makes the most valid point: if this declaration goes through, what’s to stop a Democratic president from doing the same thing on a different issue? Our Constitution was designed with checks and balances to prevent this type of thing. No man – including one who thinks he’s the best thing since sliced bread–has the right or power to undo what is written. They all need to stand up for our Constitution and for us.
Shirley is a former entertainment writer and has worked in the legal field for over 25 years