California threatens to sue President Trump over national emergency declaration

The state’s Democratic governor Gavin Newsom will be among the first political figures pushing for legal action against Trump’s latest move to secure funding for his proposed border wall.

Newsom made the announcement the day after President Trump confirmed he is declaring a national emergency, and in doing so, he is supporting state Attorney General Xavier Becerra, who spoke against Trump’s measure a week prior.

“Fortunately, Donald Trump is not the last word. The courts will be the last word,” a defiant Newsom said at a Capitol news conference alongside Becerra in which the two gave details about their plans to oppose the measure.

Newsom joined the many others who call the wall a “vanity project,” going as far as to call it also “a monument to stupidity.” He also claimed that “no other state” was going to be as affected by the declaration of emergency than California.

The governor used the opportunity to address the wildfire disaster, which he points out as a real emergency that could make good use of the funds that would divert for Trump’s plan to fulfill a campaign promise.

“The President’s ‘national emergency’ is nothing more than a fabrication while real emergencies are awaiting his action. If the President tries to use a made-up emergency to pay for his border wall, then California will see him in court.”

-Gavin Newsom/ Xavier Becerra, L.A. Times, February 15, 2019.

Newsom argues that the money that Trump will spend on his wall project because of the declaration of emergency was originally intended for the fight against drug trafficking in southern California.

“Interdiction policies we are engaged in that we want to advance in California now are being put at risk because of this political crisis that’s being manufactured,” Newsom said.

Becerra has a long history of challenging the Trump administration on legal grounds. The upcoming lawsuit opposing the declaration of emergency will be Becerra’s 46th legal battle he faces with the current government. 

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President Trump saw these reactions to his decision coming. “We will then be sued… we will possibly get another bad ruling,” said the Head of State.  “We’ll end up in the Supreme Court,” he added on his announcement.

The talks about Trump using the resource of a national state of emergency go back to the first days of the 35-day-long government shutdown, which was the longest in the country’s history, when Congress first denied the funds for the wall.

February 15 was the deadline established by both parties to reach an agreement in order to prevent another shutdown to occur, but this latest deal still didn’t grant Trump the funds he needs to build the wall.

President Donald Trump in the White House Rose Garden on February 15, 2019 | Image-: Getty Images

President Donald Trump in the White House Rose Garden on February 15, 2019 | Image-: Getty Images

Refusing to admit defeat in this matter, Trump has been true to his word and used the declaration of national emergency to get access to extra funds that will allow him to go on with the divisive construction.

"This is authority given to the president in law already. It's not as if he just didn't get what he wanted so he's waving a magic wand and taking a bunch of money," defended acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney.

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