Would declaring a state of emergency 'set a bad precedent'?

Republicans, from Mark Meadows to RINO types, are building a case against Trump's threat to declare a national emergency as a means of funding more walls at the southern border.  They claim that if Trump does this, it will "set a bad precedent" (herehereherehere, and here).

Really?

A precedent is a change in how things are done and lays the groundwork for more of the same to follow.  It can be used as a point of reference for similar actions in the future.

To say it would set a bad precedent if Trump declared a national emergency is ridiculous in light of the fact that fifty-eight national emergencies have been declared since 1976, when the National Emergencies Act was signed into law.  Thirty-one of these declared emergencies remain in effect.

The other argument you sometimes hear is that if Trump used his executive authority to declare a national emergency, then the Democrats may use this same tool in the future.

Um.  Excuse me.  But I'm sure the Democrats are aware of this tool and won't hesitate to use it when they win the White House one day, irrespective of whether Trump uses it for the wall or not (although they would claim he set the precedent).  In case you haven't noticed, Democrats use every tool at their disposal to advance their agenda.

Then there are those who say that if Trump declares a national emergency, the wall will never get built, because the declaration will get tied up in court.  Andrew McCarthy made the case that the declaration would immediately be blocked in a district court.  McCarthy noted that it would take months to work its way through the courts, during which time attention would be deflected from the crisis at the border and become all about whether Trump acted lawfully or not.  None of that would serve Trump's interests.

Mark Levin has a powerful argument against this perspective (here, 38:00 mark):

Then I hear it said, look, the courts will block the President.  Since when do presidents refuse to take action in anticipation of a court telling them no?  Of anticipation of an Obama court telling them no.  A President has his responsibilities and let the chips fall where they may in the federal courts, depending on which court it winds up with and so forth.  Why?  Because these people want to be able to tell you that they told you that the court would say no.  Of course, these district courts will say no.  That's not where the battle is.  It's in the Supreme Court.  And many of these people have already told you we've got a great court now that we've got these two men on there.  Kavanaugh and Gorsuch.  Well, let's see.  But you don't surrender in advance in anticipation of a loss.  You don't fight military battles that way.  You don't fight political battles that way.  And you don't conduct your presidency that way.  Well this could take a lot of time.  Well so what?  The president can't control that.  The status quo on the border is the status quo on the border.  In the mean time you're fighting to try and secure that border.

In addition, to suggest that declaring a national emergency would deflect attention away from where it belongs (the crisis at the border) is a view wholly disconnected from the 24/7/365 reality with respect to expressions of Trump Derangement Syndrome.

Trump's entire presidency has been subjected to nonstop distractions intended to deflect attention from real issues and accomplishments.  That Trump has been able to achieve what he has in the face of this barrage is a miracle in itself.

So what should he do?

I think it's fair to say that those of us who support the president want to see him be strong and bold.  But we also want him to be victorious.

Would declaring a national emergency be bold?  Yes.

Would it result in a victorious outcome?  We don't know.  Only the president can assess the risk of this move.  Obviously, he has said he will use this tool if necessary, but whether he will follow through on that threat is anyone's guess.

Meanwhile, another possible option is to use the Department of Defense to get the job done.  The Daily Caller reports:

The nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS) released a paper internally that suggests President Donald Trump may have the authority to use Department of Defense resources to build a wall without obtaining congressional approval or declaring a state of emergency.

CRS, Congress's in-house research arm, internally published a paper Jan. 10 titled "Can the Department of Defense Build the Border Wall?," which The Daily Caller News Foundation has obtained.  It says (emphasis added):

Another statute that authorizes the Secretary of Defense to assist civilian law enforcement with counterdrug activities may provide some authority for the construction of barriers along the border. 10 U.S.C. § 284 (Section 284) provides that the Secretary of Defense "may provide support for the counterdrug activities or activities to counter transnational organized crime" of any law enforcement agency, including through the "[c]onstruction of roads and fences and installation of lighting to block drug smuggling corridors across international boundaries of the United States." ...

Use of Section 284 would not require a declaration of a national emergency under the NEA. However, the DOD's Section 284 authority to construct fences appears to extend only to "drug smuggling corridors," a condition that may limit where DOD could deploy fencing.

I don't know what the best option is, but I'm pretty sure the current path of negotiating with leftists and cowards will not lead to a good outcome.

I hope and pray the president will stay strong and resolute in his commitment to keep our nation secure – and not at the expense of trading that security for leftist demands.

Graphic credit: New Zealand Transport Agency.

Republicans, from Mark Meadows to RINO types, are building a case against Trump's threat to declare a national emergency as a means of funding more walls at the southern border.  They claim that if Trump does this, it will "set a bad precedent" (herehereherehere, and here).

Really?

A precedent is a change in how things are done and lays the groundwork for more of the same to follow.  It can be used as a point of reference for similar actions in the future.

To say it would set a bad precedent if Trump declared a national emergency is ridiculous in light of the fact that fifty-eight national emergencies have been declared since 1976, when the National Emergencies Act was signed into law.  Thirty-one of these declared emergencies remain in effect.

The other argument you sometimes hear is that if Trump used his executive authority to declare a national emergency, then the Democrats may use this same tool in the future.

Um.  Excuse me.  But I'm sure the Democrats are aware of this tool and won't hesitate to use it when they win the White House one day, irrespective of whether Trump uses it for the wall or not (although they would claim he set the precedent).  In case you haven't noticed, Democrats use every tool at their disposal to advance their agenda.

Then there are those who say that if Trump declares a national emergency, the wall will never get built, because the declaration will get tied up in court.  Andrew McCarthy made the case that the declaration would immediately be blocked in a district court.  McCarthy noted that it would take months to work its way through the courts, during which time attention would be deflected from the crisis at the border and become all about whether Trump acted lawfully or not.  None of that would serve Trump's interests.

Mark Levin has a powerful argument against this perspective (here, 38:00 mark):

Then I hear it said, look, the courts will block the President.  Since when do presidents refuse to take action in anticipation of a court telling them no?  Of anticipation of an Obama court telling them no.  A President has his responsibilities and let the chips fall where they may in the federal courts, depending on which court it winds up with and so forth.  Why?  Because these people want to be able to tell you that they told you that the court would say no.  Of course, these district courts will say no.  That's not where the battle is.  It's in the Supreme Court.  And many of these people have already told you we've got a great court now that we've got these two men on there.  Kavanaugh and Gorsuch.  Well, let's see.  But you don't surrender in advance in anticipation of a loss.  You don't fight military battles that way.  You don't fight political battles that way.  And you don't conduct your presidency that way.  Well this could take a lot of time.  Well so what?  The president can't control that.  The status quo on the border is the status quo on the border.  In the mean time you're fighting to try and secure that border.

In addition, to suggest that declaring a national emergency would deflect attention away from where it belongs (the crisis at the border) is a view wholly disconnected from the 24/7/365 reality with respect to expressions of Trump Derangement Syndrome.

Trump's entire presidency has been subjected to nonstop distractions intended to deflect attention from real issues and accomplishments.  That Trump has been able to achieve what he has in the face of this barrage is a miracle in itself.

So what should he do?

I think it's fair to say that those of us who support the president want to see him be strong and bold.  But we also want him to be victorious.

Would declaring a national emergency be bold?  Yes.

Would it result in a victorious outcome?  We don't know.  Only the president can assess the risk of this move.  Obviously, he has said he will use this tool if necessary, but whether he will follow through on that threat is anyone's guess.

Meanwhile, another possible option is to use the Department of Defense to get the job done.  The Daily Caller reports:

The nonpartisan Congressional Research Service (CRS) released a paper internally that suggests President Donald Trump may have the authority to use Department of Defense resources to build a wall without obtaining congressional approval or declaring a state of emergency.

CRS, Congress's in-house research arm, internally published a paper Jan. 10 titled "Can the Department of Defense Build the Border Wall?," which The Daily Caller News Foundation has obtained.  It says (emphasis added):

Another statute that authorizes the Secretary of Defense to assist civilian law enforcement with counterdrug activities may provide some authority for the construction of barriers along the border. 10 U.S.C. § 284 (Section 284) provides that the Secretary of Defense "may provide support for the counterdrug activities or activities to counter transnational organized crime" of any law enforcement agency, including through the "[c]onstruction of roads and fences and installation of lighting to block drug smuggling corridors across international boundaries of the United States." ...

Use of Section 284 would not require a declaration of a national emergency under the NEA. However, the DOD's Section 284 authority to construct fences appears to extend only to "drug smuggling corridors," a condition that may limit where DOD could deploy fencing.

I don't know what the best option is, but I'm pretty sure the current path of negotiating with leftists and cowards will not lead to a good outcome.

I hope and pray the president will stay strong and resolute in his commitment to keep our nation secure – and not at the expense of trading that security for leftist demands.

Graphic credit: New Zealand Transport Agency.