Friday: We have Entered the Crazy Zone and yet another Constitutional CrisisPosted: February 15, 2019
It’s Friday Sky Dancers!
I am now fully convinced that KKKremlin Calgulia is as insane as the Roman Emperor Caligula. He signed the bill to fund the federal government then declared a national emergency because Congress won’t fund his pandering boondoggle of a wall. Then, he turned around to say “I didn’t need to do this” but he just wanted it all done “faster”.
I’m sure that’s what President Clinton thought when he declared a state of national emergency after the Oklahoma City Bombings. That’s probably what Dubya thought too after declaring his national emergency for 9/11. Right? Oh, and if you had we flew “rocket ships” over Japan on your Trump is crazy Bingo card then you win. This presser may have been his least coherent one to date and that says a lot.
Eugene Robinson of The Washington Post sums it up quite nicely! “We have a national emergency, all right. Its name is Donald Trump.”
We have a national emergency, all right. Its name is Donald Trump, and it is a force of mindless, pointless disruption.
The president’s decision to officially declare an emergency — to pretend to build an unbuildable border wall — is not only an act of constitutional vandalism. It is also an act of cowardice, a way to avoid the wrath of Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh and the rest of the far-right commentariat.
It is an end run around Congress and, as such, constitutes a violation of his oath to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States” — which gives Congress, not the president, the authority to decide how public money is spent. It does not give Trump the right to fund projects that Congress will not approve. Authoritarian leaders do that sort of thing. The puffed-up wannabe strongman now living in the White House is giving it a try.
Let’s be clear: There is no emergency. Arrests for illegally crossing the U.S.-Mexico border peaked in 2000, nearly two decades ago, at more than 1.5 million a year. They declined sharply under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama and, in 2017, were at their lowest point since 1971. In 2018, apprehensions ticked up slightly — but still barely climbed above 400,000.
There has indeed been an increase in families presenting themselves at legal points of entry to seek asylum — those groups of bedraggled Central Americans that Trump calls “caravans.” Under U.S. and international law, these people have an undisputed right to ask for asylum and have their cases evaluated. Again, they come to legal border crossings to seek admission. Only a handful try to navigate the forbidding rural terrain where Trump says he wants to build a wall.
What the administration really needs to do is expand and improve facilities for processing, caring for and, when necessary, housing these asylum seekers. But Trump doesn’t care about doing the right thing, or even the necessary thing. He cares only about being able to claim he is following through on his vicious anti-immigration rhetoric, which brands Mexican would-be migrants as “rapists” and Central Americans as members of the MS-13 street gang.
Facts do not matter when you’re crazy. Trump held a press conference this morning that proved once again that he’s unfit to hold the office of President of the United States and that he has mental/neurological problems that make him a clear and present danger.
But more than the president “telegraphing” that decision to Hannity, it was Hannity instructing Trump on how to emerge from his border wall mess unscathed in his eyes. The host first pushed Trump to declare a national emergency while interviewing him from the border during government shutdown that ended up lasting 35 days.
The New York Times also reported this week that the White House had reached out to Hannity directly to get him on board after his harsh criticism of the bill the day before. Their message, according to the Times: “Mr. Trump deserved support because he still forced concessions that he would never have gotten without a five-week partial government shutdown.”
HRC responded to an announcement from the Trump-Pence White House that along with signing the bipartisan spending bill, passed by Congress this week after intense negotiations, Trump would take the unprecedented and potentially unconstitutional move of declaring a national emergency to fund a border wall.
“There is no national security crisis at the border. To declare one based on the reality on the ground is an abuse of power that undercuts the rule of law,” said HRC Government Affairs Director David Stacy. “A solid majority of the American people reject funding for a wall on our southern border because it is a waste of money, unnecessary and ineffective. This emergency declaration is just the latest extreme step that Donald Trump and Mike Pence have taken to divide America. From revoking protections for more than a million Dreamers, including 75,000 LGBTQ young people, detaining tens of thousands of immigrants, making asylum claims almost impossible and separating thousands of children from their parents, the Trump-Pence Administration has harmed our country and violated the trust of the American people.”
The intent of emergency powers is to provide the president with a pathway for ensuring national security and other functional aspects of the federal government during a crisis in which timely action is necessary. Only in extraordinary circumstances should a president invoke emergency powers.
The Human Rights Campaign joins coalition partners, including RAICES and United We Dream, in calling for refugees and asylum seekers to be welcomed into the United States, as they flee violence and persecution in the countries they left behind.
Pelosi and Schumer have already attacked the speech and the declaration. This is via AP.
Congress’ two top Democrats say they’ll use “every remedy available” to oppose President Donald Trump’s declaration of an emergency to shift billions of federal dollars into building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (puh-LOH’-see) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said Friday they’ll take action “in the Congress, in the Courts, and in the public.”
They say Trump’s decision to declare an emergency is unlawful. They say it would “shred the Constitution” by usurping Congress’ power to control spending.
White House officials say some of the money would come from military construction projects. Pelosi and Schumer say Trump would be using money needed “for the security of our military and our nation.”
Democrats can file lawsuits and force congressional votes to block Trump’s money transfers. Trump could veto the legislation should it pass.
Trump says he expects legal challenges.
Among the notable things Trump said are that Japan is glad we’re no longer flying “rocket ships” over their heads. Ah, Godzilla can go back to retirement, I guess.
That’s just one of the crazy ass things he said this morning. He’s off wth “Angel Moms” again. He paraded them with pictures of their dead children in front of the press to shame them into his point of view. But, the “angel” status doesn’t seem to include any mother who lost her child in a school shoot up or the mother who lost her daughter to the crazed Trump supporter who ran into a crowd of people in Charlottesville.
I’ve just about had it up and over with the right wing riding this issue and these grieving parents. Again, they show no concern for parents of children lost to street violence and to those lost by white guys shooting up public places with weapons of over kill. BTW, these Angel moms want to kill the spending agreement until Trump gets what he wants. They want to cause mass suffering. And even HE made it more difficult for himself with his garbled little presser today.
Charles Pierce sums up this Constitutional Crisis and the role Mitch McConnell is playing. Either the NI or the Russians must have something horrid on both McConnell and Lindsey Graham. They’ve gone completely out of the boundaries of any kind of sense of upholding the Constitutions’ instructions and the institutions it framed.
It can be argued that this precipitous move by the White House is another bit of legerdemain through which the president* can make the Andrew McCabe revelations vanish from the news cycle. That seems less important than usual now that the Senate has decided to share the president*’s delusions and bring us along for the ride.
This is a direct assault by this president* on the Congress’s Article I powers. Usually, presidents use these powers to do things like levy sanctions on countries that are slaughtering their own people. What this president* is trying to do is to redirect money already appropriated for a project that Congress already has declined to fund—the last time only a couple of days ago. That is purely a dictatorial action. It is an abuse of power. It cannot be allowed to stand.
The argument being made by some on both the left and the right that, OK, if he can do this, then the next Democratic president can declare a national emergency on gun violence, say, or the climate crisis is sadly beside the point, and Democrats, in particular, should shut up about it. (This means you, Speaker Pelosi.) This is a clear and present danger to the constitutional order. Without the power of the purse, Congress has no power at all.
Mitch McConnell knows this. He even has been warning against this very power grab for a couple of weeks now. But he seems determined to neuter his own institution in order to curry favor with a failed president* and a bunch of idiot pundits from Fox News. He is abandoning his own responsibilities in the hopes that the courts will bail him out. And, again, there is no national emergency to be declared. Not outside of the Oval Office, anyway.
Well, you get the idea. Our President is a nutjob and sooner or later, the damage he causes will kill a huge number of people and damage our constitutional republic beyond repair.
What’s on your reading and blogging list today?