Durbin Statement On Senate's Bipartisan Rejection Of President Trump's Emergency Declaration

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Vice Chairman of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, today released the following statement after the Senate voted to reject President Donald Trump’s emergency declaration in order to fulfill his campaign promise of building a wall at the southern border:

“Today, Republicans and Democrats in the Senate chose the Constitution over the President’s so-called ‘national emergency’ declaration.  The Senate must continue to reject any effort by the President to shortchange our troops who risk their lives to keep us safe for a wild-eyed campaign pledge, which will not keep us safe.”

Last week, Durbin, along with Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Brian Schatz (D-HI), called on the Department of Defense to provide Congress with a list of military projects it intends to defund to pay for President Trump’s ineffective border wall.  In their letter to acting Defense Secretary Shanahan, the Senators highlighted the careful vetting process projects go through to get funding approval from Congress.  They also underscored the harm that diverting funding would cause to military readiness and our national security.

On Monday, Durbin, Leahy, and Schatz asked the Government Accountability Office (GAO) for a legal opinion on the authorities of the Department of Defense to transfer funds to build a border wall without the express approval of Congress.