White House preparing draft for Trump to declare national emergency: CNN

The White House is preparing a draft of an emergency declaration President Trump could issue to secure funding for a wall along the southern border, CNN reported Thursday.

The news outlet obtained internal documents that show the administration has identified more than $7 billion in funding for the wall if Trump opts to declare a national emergency.

The draft declaration argues that the “massive amount of aliens who unlawfully enter the United States each day is a direct threat to the safety and security of our nation and constitutes a national emergency,” CNN reported.

{mosads}The administration would look to pull most of the money for the wall from military construction and Pentagon civil works funds, with additional funding coming from treasury forfeitures and the Department of Homeland Security, CNN reported.

The declaration has been updated within the past week, an official told CNN.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Democrats have expressed skepticism about the legality of such an order, and if Trump followed through it would likely be tied up in the courts. Republicans have indicated they would prefer Trump not resort to such an option to build the wall.

A partial government shutdown that has lasted 34 days and counting was triggered by Trump’s demand for wall funding. Democrats have repeatedly rejected that request, and urged the president to open the government amid negotiations over border security.

The Senate on Thursday rejected two measures to reopen the government.

In response, Trump said he would support a “reasonable” solution brokered by Senate leaders, but that he would use “other alternatives if I have to.”

The president earlier this month floated the possibility of declaring a national emergency to start construction on the wall. He expressed confidence in his legal standing, but later backed away from the proposal and said Congress should address the issue.

Updated at 6 p.m.

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