Adam Schiff Says President Trump Cannot Declare Wall Emergency

Representative Adam Schiff
Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

President Donald Trump shut the United States government down over his demands for funding a wall on the U.S. border with Mexico. Trump proudly said he would own the government shutdown last month. Now that the partial government closure is a reality without much hope of an end, Trump is exploring ways to fund the wall anyway, and one of those ways is declaring the situation a national emergency. However, Representative Adam Schiff (D-California) said that the president lacks the power and reason to claim such an emergency.

Earlier today, Schiff told CNN that Trump is merely using “threatening talk” to try to get what he wants in this situation.

“Look, if Harry Truman couldn’t nationalize the steel industry during wartime, this president doesn’t have the power to declare an emergency and build a multi-billion dollar wall on the border. So, that’s a nonstarter.”

Schiff went on reasonably to point out that President Trump painted himself into a corner with his wall funding demands of $5.7 billion. The representative wants Trump to figure out a way to get himself out of the position he put himself in with such stringent demands, which Congress is not prepared to meet.

“We need to reopen the government. We need to put people back to work.”

Ultimately, Schiff agrees with Senator Doug Jones. A president shutting down the U.S. government over not getting what he wants is unacceptable to both Congressmen.

“If you reward the president for that kind of tactic, then we’re going to see every year the president shutting down the government, and we just can’t afford to do business that way,” according to Schiff.

Earlier on Sunday CNN reported that Trump planned to look into his options for building the wall by declaring the situation at the Mexican border a national emergency. On his way to Camp David, Trump told reporters, “I may declare a national emergency dependent on what’s going to happen over the next few days.”

If he declares an emergency for the wall, then the president would use military funding to build the physical barrier across the southern border of the U.S.

Ultimately, the recent talks between Trump and members of Congress have been unfruitful regarding a resolution on funding the wall and reopening the government. Meanwhile, many federal employees are working without getting paid while others remain on furlough with no end in sight. Also affected are some home buyers, and if things go on long enough, early tax refunds could also face delays.