Cornyn dismisses chance that Congress will curtail Trump tariffs
© UPI Photo

Sen. John CornynJohn CornynConservatives wage assault on Mueller report Senate GOP poised to go 'nuclear' on Trump picks GOP rep to introduce constitutional amendment to limit Supreme Court seats to 9 MORE (Texas), the No. 2 Senate Republican, downplayed the chances on Monday that Congress would pass legislation pushing back against President TrumpDonald John TrumpHow to stand out in the crowd: Kirsten Gillibrand needs to find her niche Countdown clock is on for Mueller conclusions Omar: White supremacist attacks are rising because Trump publicly says 'Islam hates us' MORE’s tariffs, despite growing frustration among Republicans. 

“I think that's primarily an executive branch function, and I don’t really see Congress passing and getting a presidential signature on something constraining his authority,” Cornyn told reporters in response to questions about Trump’s decision to remove exemptions on steep tariffs for steel and aluminum imports from the European Union, Canada and Mexico.

ADVERTISEMENT

Cornyn said that lawmakers would continue trying to influence the administration's decisionmaking process in conversations with Trump and White House officials.

“We have been talking for a long time and that's been helpful in terms of providing guidance,” he said. 

The imposition of the tariffs has sparked a backlash from U.S. trading partners and disquieted Republican lawmakers who are taking a new look at legislation in the wake of the decision. 

Sen. Pat ToomeyPatrick (Pat) Joseph ToomeyOvernight Defense: Pick for South Korean envoy splits with Trump on nuclear threat | McCain blasts move to suspend Korean military exercises | White House defends Trump salute of North Korean general WH backpedals on Trump's 'due process' remark on guns Top GOP candidate drops out of Ohio Senate race MORE (R-Pa.) announced he would support legislation from Sen. Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeStop asking parents to sacrifice Social Security benefits for paid family leave The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump hits media over New Zealand coverage GOP moves to rein in president's emergency powers MORE (R-Utah) that would require Congress to sign off on the imposition of tariffs.

A spokeswoman for Sen. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerTrump keeps tight grip on GOP Brexit and exit: A transatlantic comparison Sasse’s jabs at Trump spark talk of primary challenger MORE (R-Tenn.) said separately on Monday that he and other senators are working “to develop legislation that would address the administration’s recent actions to intervene in markets by abusing the president’s national security authorities.”

But legislation curbing Trump's trade authority likely faces an uphill battle in Congress. Any bill would likely need to win over enough support to override a veto, meaning the backing of two-thirds of both chambers.