Well, it’s official – or pseudo-official at least.
On Sunday, reports that Rand Paul would not support Donald Trump’s border declaration effectively sealed the deal on a Senate resolution aimed at nixing the president’s emergency order.
“I can’t vote to give the president the power to spend money that hasn’t been appropriated by Congress”, Paul said at the Southern Kentucky Lincoln Day Dinner over the weekend.
“We may want more money for border security, but Congress didn’t authorize it. If we take away those checks and balances, it’s a dangerous thing”, he added.
Yes, it’s “a dangerous thing” for lawmakers to countenance blatant efforts by the executive to usurp congressional power over spending in an egregious effort to seize funds earmarked for other purposes and divert them to an insane vanity project predicated on an absurd narrative about an immigrant “invasion.”
Paul would join Lisa Murkowski, Susan Collins and breezed through the House last week.in breaking rank to vote with Democrats. That would be enough for the resolution to pass the Senate. It
Trump, you’re reminded, is hell-bent on vetoing it. Just ask him.
Well, now he’s going to have to – veto it, that is.
Because on Monday morning, Mitch McConnell told reporters in Louisville that the Senate will in fact vote to disapprove the farcical emergency declaration and that Trump will in fact veto the resolution.
Congress, McConnell said, won’t be able to override the veto.
Maybe not, but one thing Trump “won’t be able” to do, is suffer the embarrassment of having both chambers effectively call bullsh*t on his border emergency without losing his mind and starting a war of words with GOP defectors.
That’s a dangerous thing to do right now. It’s entirely possible that his veto will cause consternation among moderate Republicans on the Hill at a time when multiple House committees are busy launching sweeping investigations aimed at uncovering potential wrongdoing.
We’ll leave you with some excerpts from Rand Paul’s Fox News Op-Ed explaining that supporting Trump’s power grab after decrying presidential “arrogance” under Obama is a level of hypocrisy Republicans shouldn’t stomach.
In September of 2014, I had these words to say: “The president acts like he’s a king. He ignores the Constitution. He arrogantly says, ‘If Congress will not act, then I must.’
Donald J. Trump agreed with me when he said in November 2014 that President Barack Obama couldn’t make a deal on immigration so “now he has to use executive action, and this is a very, very dangerous thing that should be overridden easily by the Supreme Court.”
I would literally lose my political soul if I decided to treat President Trump different than President Obama. (Although, I’ll note, not one Democrat criticized Obama for his executive orders.)
I support President Trump. I supported his fight to get funding for the wall from Republicans and Democrats alike, and I share his view that we need more and better border security.
However, I cannot support the use of emergency powers to get more funding, so I will be voting to disapprove of his declaration when it comes before the Senate.
Every single Republican I know decried President Obama’s use of executive power to legislate. We were right then. But the only way to be an honest officeholder is to stand up for the same principles no matter who is in power.