The Republican Party has fallen woefully short on putting their money where their mouths were during the Obama administration now that a criminal, con man clown representing the GOP is in the White House. After eight years of pearl-clutching over every move Obama made, the GOP has been silent while Trump abuses his presidential powers.
— Newsweek (@Newsweek) March 13, 2019
One move Trump has made has piqued their ire, however. Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) is spearheading a bill to limit the president’s emergency powers after Trump tried to use them to fulfill a campaign promise of building a wall on the southern border. According to Newsweek, Lee said that his new bill will prevent a president from “acting like a king [by] taking back the legislative powers that allow him to do so.”
‘If passed, the new legislation, called the Assuring That Robust, Thorough and Informed Congressional Leadership Is Exercised Over National Emergencies (Article One) Act, would require the approval of Congress for any national emergency declaration to continue beyond 30 days. Without congressional approval, the declaration would be terminated.’
— Seung Min Kim (@seungminkim) March 13, 2019
Past presidents have used this power for things like epidemic health crises. Trump used it out of fear of a 2020 reelection due to criticism from right-wing pundits like Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh. The Senate now faces a vote on allowing Trump to continue with his plans to use emergency funds intended for real crisis to solve an issue no one else sees as a crisis.
Lee’s office said that:
‘In obvious cases, the president should have the statutory authority to respond to an immediate crisis, such as an act of war or natural disaster. The problem is that emergency powers are vulnerable to abuse; they can act as a cheat-code that undermines our system of separation of powers and enables the president to bypass the difficult work of enacting legislation.’
The White House is privately negotiating with Senate Rs who want to rein in Trump’s emergency powers — which could lead to the surprise defeat of the disapproval resolution this week. New deets in here w/ @ericawerner https://t.co/ooHeQoL5pC
— Seung Min Kim (@seungminkim) March 12, 2019
Lee is not the only GOP senator outraged by Trump’s abuse of power. Many of them have talked a great game about reigning Trump in on this matter, but fourteen of them are standing behind Lee to actually do something about it. It’s just too bad that they didn’t act well before now to prevent Trump from sitting in the Oval Office altogether.
‘In addition to Lee, 14 other GOP senators have thrown their support behind the bill, including Chuck Grassley of Iowa; Thom Tillis of North Carolina, Mitt Romney of Utah; Ted Cruz of Texas; Joni Ernst of Iowa; Roy Blunt of Missouri; Jerry Moran of Kansas; Lamar Alexander of Tennessee; Roger Wicker of Mississippi; Ben Sasse of Nebraska; Ron Johnson of Wisconsin; Rob Portman of Ohio; Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania; and Todd Young of Indiana.’
Speaker Pelosi on Senate GOP emergency powers bill: “The House will not take up this legislation to give President Trump a pass.” pic.twitter.com/xpQ1m3cx1p
— Evan McMurry (@evanmcmurry) March 13, 2019
While the GOP has been largely willing to let most of Trump’s worst mistakes slide, this one has some measure of widespread support. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said that he “may well support” the bill.
‘We’re looking at some ways to revisit the law. There’s a lot of discomfort with the law. Was it too broad back in the ’70s when it was passed? So yeah, we’re discussing altering that.’