Congresswoman Grace Meng will be introducing legislation on Friday to prevent President Trump from declaring a national emergency to build his wall along the U.S.- Mexico border.
The “No Walls Act” would prohibit the construction of barriers along the U.S.-Mexico border if national emergencies are declared during government shutdowns. Under the measure, barriers would include fences, walls and steel slats.
The government has been partially shut down for 20 days, leaving hundreds of thousands of federal workers without a paycheck.
Trump, who walked out of a White House negotiating session Wednesday after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi refused to agree to pay for his wall, reiterated Thursday that he may declare a national emergency if Democrats don’t give him what he wants.
Meng said it’s unconscionable that President Trump is threatening to side-step Congress and declare a fake national emergency in order to build his wall, as funding for the government and more than 800,000 federal workers hangs in the balance.
“We must send a clear message to the President that creating this type of manufactured emergency for the sole purpose of securing an unrealistic campaign promise is unacceptable. There can be legitimate national emergencies. Federal agencies can construct authorized border barriers,” said Meng. “But the President can’t just refuse to fund the government, say ‘EMERGENCY!!!’ and get whatever political wish he desires. That’s not how the Constitution works.”
Meng added, “The passage of my legislation would ensure that this outrageous abuse of power does not happen, and I urge all of my colleagues to support it.”