On Friday February 15th, Donald Trump brazenly declared a state of emergency on the US southern border and subsequently redirected over $6.6B to construct 234 miles of barriers. The diversion of funds comes from money appropriated by Congress for the military: $3.6B from a military construction fund, $2.5B from a Pentagon drug prevention program, and $600M from a Treasury Department drug forfeiture fund.
Appropriation of funds by the US House of Representatives is one of the most important roles performed of the chamber. By declaring a national emergency, Trump is abusing his power as the President to bypass Congress to fund his pet project. After the longest government shutdown in US history and weeks of negotiation, Congress struck a bipartisan deal on February 11th that included $1.375B for Trump’s wall, a far cry from the $5.7B he demanded. Backed into a corner, Trump has declared the emergency to appease his base, ignoring the dubious constitutional standing or the harm diverting funds might incur.
Even though both the House and Senate overwhelmingly passed H.J. Res. 46, Trump has vetoed the legislation. The House is scheduled to hold a veto override vote on Tuesday, March 26, which will require a 2/3rds majority to pass. It is now time for Congress to act regardless of party affiliation. This power grab by Trump is inexcusable and must be met with sharp resistance and repercussion.
ONE CALL TO MAKE: Representative Richmond or Scalise
Because of how Congressional districts are drawn, New Orleans residents have either Richmond or Scalise as their representative. If you don't know who your representative is, you can look it up by entering your home address on the U.S. House of Representatives website.
Representative Cedric Richmond - in DC at (202) 225-6636, and in New Orleans at (504) 288-3777
Representative Steve Scalise - in DC at (202) 225-3015, and in Metairie at (504) 837-1259
Hello. My name is [Your Name] and I'm an active voter from New Orleans, ZIP Code 70118 [Or wherever you’re from].
IF CALLING REPRESENTATIVE RICHMOND:
I’m calling today to support an override of Trump’s veto of H.J. Resolution 46, the resolution to terminate Trump’s national emergency declaration. I want to thank Representative Richmond for cosponsoring the veto override to put an end to the poisonous abuse of power by the Trump administration.
IF CALLING REPRESENTATIVE SCALISE:
’m calling today to support an override of Trump’s veto of H.J. Resolution 46, the resolution to terminate Trump’s national emergency declaration. I expect Representative Scalise to support the veto override to put an end to the poisonous abuse of power by the Trump administration.
Thank you for your time and attention.
This call is adapted from 5calls.org, which can be viewed here.