President Donald Trump made the national emergency announcement from the Rose Garden of the White House on Friday.
Watch the president’s remarks in the player above, video stream courtesy PBS News Hour.
To read about the announcement, click here; to read about the lawsuit opposing the declaration, click here.
To read the actual “Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2019” click here.
Congresswoman Escobar Statement on President Trump’s Unlawful National Emergency Declaration
Today, Congresswoman Veronica Escobar (TX-16) issued the following statement on President Donald Trump’s unlawful national emergency declaration:
“President Trump’s national emergency declaration is a political stunt in order to further his administrations’ anti-immigrant agenda and deliver on a campaign promise to build a wasteful and hateful border wall.
“This attack on our democracy not only undermines Congressional and constitutional authority, it hurts the training, readiness, and quality of life of our service members and their families by potentially taking away more than $275 million from our Ft. Bliss Army Base. Furthermore, this promotes an erroneous narrative that portrays all border communities, including El Paso – a safe and vibrant border community – as a problem.
“El Pasoans and fronterizos across the country know that there is no national emergency. Instead, this administration has manufactured a crisis that has used their communities as ground-zero to implement President Trump’s cruel policies towards immigrants and asylum-seeking children and families.
“President Trump’s abuse of power and lies against our southern border will be challenged in Congress and in the courts. I urge my Republican colleagues to end this complicity, stand for what is right, and work towards understanding and addressing the root causes of our nation’s challenges.”
Texas Border Caucus Chair Rep. Blanco Responds to Trump’s National Emergency Declaration
“Trump’s national emergency declaration for his border wall is dangerous and radical. There is no national security crisis on the border. The only crisis we have is a humanitarian crisis.
“Trump and the Republicans had control of the Presidency, the House, and the Senate for two years and could not get his border wall funded. This declaration is a dangerous step into dark territory for a president that acts on his worst political impulses. He has trampled on the rule of law and disregarded accepted facts, even from military Generals, the F.B.I., and the U.S. intelligence community. This declaration is purely political.”
- According to Customs and Border Protection, arrests along the southwest border — the standard metric used to calculate illegal border crossings — numbered 396,579 in fiscal year 2018, which ended Oct. 1. That’s lower than the average over the previous decade (400,751). It’s also lower than the number of border arrests in fiscal 2016, 2014 and 2013.
- Violent crime has been dropping in El Paso since its modern-day peak in 1993 and was at historic lows before a fence was authorized by Congress in 2006. Violent crime actually ticked up during the border fence’s construction and after its completion, according to police data collected by the FBI.
- For the third straight year, the city of El Paso was ranked as the safest of its size in the country…Congressional Quarterly ranks the border town as the safest of cities with a population greater than 500,000.
Senator Rodriguez statement in response to the President’s false declaration of a national emergency
State Sen. José Rodríguez, released the following statement after the President declared a false state of national emergency:
It is difficult to fathom an emergency declaration after having had two years to work with a compliant Congress to get done what the President thinks ought to be done. The fact that he was not able to convince his own party of the need when they had control and has openly stated that this is the issue upon which he is staking his re-election campaign should be enough for any self-proclaimed constitutionalist to look askance at his proposed actions.
More importantly, in my opinion, is that the entire premise is a lie. There is no definition of “border security,” any more than there is “open borders.” Those are simply buzzwords meant to trigger people who know little to nothing about the realities of border enforcement and have unwarranted fears about immigrants.
El Pasoans know the reality of the border first-hand. While I, and frankly, the government’s own security agencies, categorically reject the notion that the border poses an unmet national security threat, we also all recognize the very real issue of smuggling of people and contraband that must be met with smart, focused law enforcement and adequate judiciary. El Paso meets this challenge every day without demonizing immigrants or border communities.
The last thing the country needs is an out-of-control president who cannot work with Congress or be trusted to honor an agreement – as happened when he shut down the government for 35 days, hurting millions of people – then attempts unilateral actions in response to criticism from talk show hosts who know or care little for the facts.