On February 15, President Donald Trump declared a national emergency on the border with Mexico to access billions of dollars that Congress refused to give him to build his proposed border wall. “We’re going to confront the national security crisis on our southern border, and we’re going to do it one way or the other,” President Trump said in a televised statement in the Rose Garden 13 hours after Congress passed a spending measure without the money he had sought. “It’s an invasion,” he added. “We have an invasion of drugs and criminals coming into our country.” President Trump’s announcement came during a bizarre, 50-minute press conference in which he ping-ponged from topic to topic, touching on the economy, China trade talks, his summit meeting with North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong Un, and the reasons why he deserves to win the Nobel Peace Prize. President Trump also explained his failure to secure wall funding during his first two years in office when Republicans controlled both houses of Congress by saying, “I was a little new to the job.”
The decision by President Donald Trump immediately incited condemnation by Democrats, who call the move unconstitutional, as well as from some Republicans who view it as setting a negative precedent. “This is a power grab by a disappointed president, who has gone outside the bounds of the law to try to get what he failed to achieve in the constitutional legislative process,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schummer (D-NY) in a joint statement. Additionally, Governors Gavin Newsom (D-CA) and Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) similarly condemned the President’s actions and stated that their states will file suit over the issue. President Trump acknowledged that his declaration of a national emergency would be litigated in the courts and even predicted a rough road for his side. “Look, I expect to be sued,” he said, launching into a mocking riff about how he anticipated lower court rulings against him. “And we’ll win in the Supreme Court,” he predicted.