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Pandora's Box? Why Critics Are Leery of Trump Declaring a Nat'l Emergency to Secure Border Wall Funding

01-29-2019
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WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump is now scheduled to give his State of the Union address on Feb. 5. That's one week from today.

He originally was supposed to give the speech in the House of Representatives tonight, but the event was canceled due to the partial government shutdown.

Now that the government has been temporarily re-opened, Trump and a bipartisan group of lawmakers have less than three weeks to come up with some sort of deal before the temporary government funding bill runs out.

If they can't reach an agreement by then, Trump warns he will either allow the government to shut down again, or he'll declare a national emergency to enable him to build the wall without direct congressional funding.

Meanwhile, CBN News Chief Political Correspondent David Brody says either scenario - a shutdown or the declaration of a national emergency – could potentially open a can of worms.

"Donald Trump's going to try and figure out how to build this wall. If Congress won't do it, he'll definitely go the national emergency route," Brody told CBN's Pat Robertson, noting that such a move will almost certainly be challenged in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

He also suggested that Trump using his executive powers to declare a national emergency sets a dangerous precedent.

"The danger with that is a Democrat president comes along and all of a sudden climate change is this national emergency where you have to dip into funds. It could open up a huge Pandora's box," Brody warned.

Meanwhile, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders says it's up to Democrats to avoid another shutdown.

"The president doesn't want to go through another shutdown," she told reporters during Monday's White House briefing. "That's not the goal. The goal is border security and protecting the American people."

"Ideally, Democrats would take these next three weeks to negotiate in good faith as they've indicated that they would and come up with a deal that makes sense, that actually fixes the problem so we don't have to go through that process," she said.

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