politics

The Senate Has Enough Votes From Republicans And Democrats To Vote Against Trump’s National Emergency

Congress is ready to reject President Trump’s call for a national emergency over his long-demanded border wall. In a clear statement that it will defend its ability to control federal spending, the U.S. Senate will have enough votes to pass a resolution of disapproval, which will block the national emergency declaration. While President Trump is expected to veto the move, it demonstrates how unpopular the call for a national emergency currently is in Congress.

The House of Representatives has already voted 245-182 in support of a resolution blocking Trump’s declaration.

@politico / Twitter

Thirteen Republicans in the House joined Democrats in backing the measure. With a handful of Republicans joining Democrats, the Senate appears to have the 51 votes necessary to pass a resolution against President Trump’s emergency declaration. Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul joined Sen. Susan Collins, Thom Tillis and Lisa Murkowski in giving Democrats the 51-vote majority they need to approve the resolution in the upper chamber. 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell acknowledged this during a press conference. McConnell talked about the vote count and his disapproval of the president’s use of power.

“I was one of those hoping the president would not take the national emergency route,” McConnell told reporters. “Once you decide to do that, I said I would support it, but I was hoping he wouldn’t take that particular path.”

Yet, On Feb. 15, The Boston Globe reported that McConnell fully supported President Trump’s decision to declare a national emergency to divert funds for a border wall.

“I indicated to him I’m going to support the national emergency declaration,” McConnell said on the Senate floor, according to The Boston Globe.

President Trump declared a national emergency last month after Congress sent him a bipartisan funding bill that didn’t include funding for a border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. The national emergency declaration allows him to get billions of dollars from other sources of the government to pay for the barrier. Trump claims the border wall is necessary to reduce the flow of drugs and illegal immigrants into the U.S.

“I could do the wall over a longer period of time,” Trump declared to reporters after announcing the national emergency. “I didn’t need to do this. But I’d rather do it much faster,” he said. “And I don’t have to do it for the election. I’ve already done a lot of wall for the election. 2020. And the only reason we’re up here talking about this is because of the election—because they want to try to win an election, which it looks like they’re not going to be able to do.”

In contrary to his words, the fact remains that there has been no movement or work in constructing the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Despite the Senate’s support for the resolution, Congress will not likely block the emergency declaration since Trump has vowed to veto it.

https://twitter.com/CillizzaCNN/status/1102688534002102273

While the Senate has enough votes to pass a resolution and have it end up on Trump’s desk, the president has already vowed to veto it. This essentially means that Congress would need two-thirds of its members in both House and Senate to overrule the veto, which is unlikely.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Monday that if the President vetoes the resolution, Democrats will most likely respond in Congress and in court.

“We’ll fight him in the Congress, we’ll fight him in the courts and we’ll fight him in the court of public opinion,” Pelosi told reporters. “What he’s doing is wrong and the Republicans know it.”

While Trump may veto the bill, the Senate vote will have a big impact on how courts see the validity of his call for a national emergency.

@DavidJollyFL / Twitter

At this time, Democrats have enough votes needed to pass a resolution in the Senate. However, there could be even more Republicans joining their efforts that will display a rare rebuke of presidential authority. As Trump is expected to execute his first-ever veto to block the measure, there will be lasting impact from the Senate vote.

The plaintiffs in multiple lawsuits will use the Senate vote as an example of President Trump overreaching his powers by declaring a national emergency. Having this congressional repudiation from both Democrats and Republicans outlines how many in Congress feel about Trump’s call for a national emergency.

Even after the veto, this doesn’t mean Trump’s wall is a done deal. There are already countless lawsuits and legal cases to be dealt with before a single piece of wall is built.

The Senate is scheduled to vote on the resolution next week.

READ: AOC Is The Clear Winner Of The Michael Cohen Congressional Hearing

Miami Film Festival Cancels Screening of Immigration Doc After ICE Detained The Movie's Main Character

politics

Miami Film Festival Cancels Screening of Immigration Doc After ICE Detained The Movie’s Main Character

The Infiltrators / Baked Studios

For more than a year, anti-Trump activists have speculated that the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) were targeting them because of their outspoken views and protests against the president. Initially, the fact that undocumented activists were getting detained by ICE soon after a rally or protest seemed like a coincidence.

An NBC News report shows that immigration officials had a “secret database of activists, journalists, and social media influencers tied to the migrant caravan and in some cases, placed alerts on their passports.” All of this goes to show that ICE is watching closely, and this next story is, unfortunately, another casualty of what it means to fight for justice and against the government.

An undocumented immigrant from Argentina was detained by ICE last week after the release of a documentary that exposes controversial truths about the immigration system and ICE.

@ForkFilms / Twitter

Claudio Rojas, 53, was initially detained in 2012 because he overstayed his visa. During this period of his detainment, according to the Associated Press, activists purposefully got arrested and detained in order to expose what was taking place inside the Broward Transitional Center, in Florida. More importantly, the activists wanted to help Rojas and others detained like him who also staged a hunger strike. The more information these activists had from the inside about Rojas, the better case they could build for him to be released.

The documentar is titled “The Infiltrators” and it won two awards at the Sundance Film Festival.

@sundanceorg / Twitter

Filmmakers Alex Rivera and Cristina Ibarra told the AP that Rojas was the main focus of the film, and also say that he had always been an organizer of justice. As a result of the advocacy for Rojas, ICE released him and others. Now years later, and after the release of the movie, ICE has detained him once again.

Sandy Pineda, Rojas’s attorney alleges that ICE has apprehended him once again simply because of what the film exposed.

“I definitely think it’s retaliation,” Sandy Pineda told The Washington Post. “For them to take this stance and to just arrest him so suddenly for no apparent reason, it’s very unusual.”

Rojas was supposed to attend a celebratory screening in Miami with the filmmakers but now that has been canceled.

According to the Miami Herald, organizers of the Miami Film Festival canceled the screening of “The Infiltrators” because it became too controversial since the detainment of the leading character in the documentary.

The festival didn’t want to “appear to be taking a side” on the immigration matter or “to take a political stance,” the film’s producer told the Miami Herald.

The film festival has since apologized for their action against the film.

READ: Advocacy Groups Suing ICE For Mass Raid In Tennessee, Claiming They Violated Workers’ Constitutional Rights

Paid Promoted Stories