Doomed Veto Override Keeps ‘Emergency’ Declaration in Place

The U.S. Capitol. (AP file photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON (CN) – House lawmakers took another jab at squashing the president’s southern border wall but failed Tuesday to garner the votes needed to override his veto from last month.

President Trump signed the veto, the first of his term, against a resolution that would have halted his declaration of national emergency. 

Democrats needed a two-thirds majority, meaning 286 votes, to overrule that veto. With only 14 Republicans on board, however, the effort failed this afternoon 248-181.

Outlook for Democratic success in this vote was grim, having failed to get enough Republican support for the first halting resolution to project a potential override. 

Speaker Nancy Pelosi said at an event in New York, however, that it was not Democrats’ intent to push for a second shot at an override but rather to “establish the intent of Congress.” 

There is some bipartisan agreement that this type of veto sets a precedent for future presidents to declare emergencies at-will to pass their agendas.

Many Democrats also argue that it pushes back against Congress’ constitutional right to establish federal budgets. For his part, President Trump said he’s just exercising his rights to declare national emergencies. 

The Senate will not hold a vote of their own on the matter, meaning the president’s veto will likely stand. Discussions have already begun from the Pentagon regarding where military construction budgets can be slashed to make $3.6 billion available for the president’s long-promised wall.

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