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Brady Supports Trump Emergency Declaration to Address Crisis at Border

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Washington, February 26, 2019 | comments

Washington, DC – Congressman Kevin Brady (TX-08) released the following statement after voting against a partisan House resolution that would overturn the national emergency declared by President Trump:   

In Texas, we can no longer turn a blind eye to the thousands of young children forced into prostitution, friends who are ruined by drug addiction and loved ones lost to violence from our porous border.

"Regrettably, Democrats in Congress have made it clear they are not willing to make national security a priority or help us find a full solution.

"Unlike President Obama’s serial constitutional violations, President Trump has both the legal and constitutional right to declare a national emergency on the southern border. 

"It’s time to act – I support the President’s commitment to funding smart, effective solutions.”

Background:

The Presidents Executive Action declaring a national emergency makes available additional troops and funding for military construction.

  • The Administration has identified up to $6.7 billion, including:
    • About $601 million from the Treasury Forfeiture Fund
    • Up to $2.5 billion under the Department of Defense funds transferred for Support for Counterdrug Activities (Title 10 United States Code, section 284)  
    • Up to $3.6 billion reallocated from Department of Defense military construction projects under the President’s declaration of a national emergency (Title 10 United States Code, section 2808)
  • The Department of Homeland Security, Department of Defense, and the Army Corps of Engineers are working to create a prioritized list of segments and a work plan for the remainder of FY 2019 and beyond.
    • New projects could include: new levee wall, new and replacement primary pedestrian barrier, new vehicle-to-pedestrian barrier, and new secondary barrier. 

Presidential authority to declare a national emergency as allowed under the National Emergencies Act.

  • Since 1976, Presidents have declared nearly 60 national emergencies.  
  • Most of the previously declared national emergencies have been continually renewed and are still in effect, after being continually renewed.
  • Multiple Governors have declared states of emergency along the border in the past.
    • Former Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano, who became President Obama’s DHS Secretary, declared a state of emergency along the border in 2005. 
    • Former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson also declared a state of emergency at the border in 2005. 
  • Former President George W. Bush and former President Obama both directed the use of the military to assist DHS in securing and managing the Southern Border. 
  • Former President Bush declared a national emergency in 2001 which invoked reprogramming authority granted by Title 10 United States Code, section 2808, and both he and former President Obama used that authority a total of 18 times to fund projects between 2001 and 2014.
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