REBUKED: Senate Republicans Turn On Trump Over National Emergency

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Saagar Enjeti White House Correspondent
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Twelve Republican senators voted Thursday to rebuke President Donald Trump’s declaration of a national emergency at the southern border in a major embarrassment to the White House.

The senators joined their Democratic colleagues in passing a resolution, which notes official congressional disapproval of Trump’s declaration of a national emergency. The national emergency declaration is paired with a number of executive actions designed to make approximately $8 billion of funding available to begin construction on a wall along the southern border.

The senators’ main concern centered on the idea that Trump is circumventing Congress’s enumerated power of the purse to appropriate funds and use them as he pleases. Nearly all have noted that future Democratic presidents would exploit Trump’s action and declare their own national emergencies to fulfill campaign promises. (RELATED: 3 Senate Republicans Are Banding Together To Support Resolution To Terminate Trump’s National Emergency)

WASHINGTON, DC – FEBRUARY 16: U.S. President Donald Trump, right, acknowledges US Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) (Photo by Ron Sachs-Pool/Getty Images)

They included Sens. Marco Rubio, Rob Portman, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Pat Toomey, Roy Blunt, Lamar Alexander, Mitt Romney, Rand Paul, Jerry Moran, Mike Lee, and Roger Wicker.

Forty-one Republican senators stood by the Trump administration, including Sen. Thom Tillis, who previously had declared in a Washington Post op-ed that he could not support Trump on the declaration of a national emergency.

(Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images)

Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Mike Pence look on as President Donald Trump delivers the State of the Union address. (Doug Mills-Pool/Getty Images)

Trump made clear ahead of the vote and after the vote that he would issue a swift veto. The veto will likely put the matter to rest as neither chamber of Congress appears to have the necessary two-thirds majority to overturn Trump’s veto.

Some Senate Republicans and White House aides sought to stop the embarrassing defeat by attempting to create an alternative resolution that would restrict the president’s future use of executive power. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi quickly shot down the resolution, however, and Trump himself did not appear to endorse it Wednesday.