Republicans are increasingly bullish they can block Congress from formally disapproving of President Donald Trump’s declaration of an emergency on the southern border in order to redirect spending as he sees fit — although they still might have to go through the process of a veto by Trump and the fallout from that.
House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., said Tuesday that while he hoped the Senate would block disapproval of Trump’s declaration, it would in any case have no chance of a veto override in the House. The House will vote Tuesday on the resolution of disapproval, and it is expected to pass easily, although the margin is unclear at this point.
Over in the Senate, it seems more than possible that at least 51 senators will vote to pass the joint resolution and send it to Trump’s desk under the relevant expedited procedures. But a two-thirds vote in each chamber would be required to overcome an expected Trump veto.
“When you see the vote today, there will be nowhere near the votes to override a veto,” Scalise said. “This emergency declaration will be upheld, even if it makes its way through the Senate, which hopefully it doesn’t get past the Senate.”
“We’re going to stand with the president in making sure we can secure this border and confront this national crisis that’s taking lives every single day,” the Louisiana Republican told reporters.
Scalise was appearing with other House GOP leaders for a regular news conference Tuesday, and they were joined by Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill.
Kinzinger recently returned from an Air National Guard deployment to the U.S.-Mexico border, where he said he came away with the opinion that the emergency declaration was warranted.
“If this was just an issue of immigration, I wouldn’t think so. But this is an issue of drugs and human trafficking,” Kinzinger said. “I think compassion and border security are not mutually exclusive. In fact, I think they can only exist with each other.”