Pelosi fundraising off Trump emergency declaration

Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiAre Democrats turning Trump-like? Pelosi hits Trump, Netanyahu for 'weakness' amid tensions over Omar and Tlaib In Hong Kong, the need for peaceful persistence MORE (D-Calif.) sent out a fundraising email to supporters Friday after President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump watching 'very closely' as Portland braces for dueling protests WaPo calls Trump admin 'another threat' to endangered species Are Democrats turning Trump-like? MORE declared a national emergency to build a border wall.

The email excoriates the president for the declaration and gives recipients the option of donating anywhere from $10 to $250, or an amount of their choosing.

“Trump admitted he ‘didn’t need’ to declare a national emergency to build his border wall. If you don’t ‘need’ to do it, it’s NOT an emergency,” Pelosi wrote in the email. “The #FakeTrumpEmergency is a blatant abuse of power. Trump couldn’t extort money for his wall from Mexico or Congress, so he’s stealing it from agencies that keep this nation safe to get his way.”

Trump declared the national emergency as a way to boost funding for a barrier on the southern border. The White House said it has identified as much as $8.1 billion, including more than $6 billion from the Pentagon, that will be available to fulfill the president’s signature campaign promise.

During Friday's announcement in the Rose Garden, Trump said, “I didn't need to do this, but I'd rather do it much faster,” referring to constructing barriers on the border.

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Congressional Democrats swiftly rebuked the move, calling it an unnecessary overstep that might exceed Trump’s constitutional powers.

“The President’s unlawful declaration over a crisis that does not exist does great violence to our Constitution and makes America less safe, stealing from urgently needed defense funds for the security of our military and our nation,” Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerAppropriators warn White House against clawing back foreign aid Colorado candidates vying to take on Gardner warn Hickenlooper they won't back down Trump ahead of New Hampshire speech: Lewandowski would be 'fantastic' senator MORE (D-N.Y.) said in a joint statement. “This is plainly a power grab by a disappointed President, who has gone outside the bounds of the law to try to get what he failed to achieve in the constitutional legislative process.”

The southern border has become a flashpoint ever since the Trump administration implemented its “zero tolerance” immigration policy, which initially resulted in family separations.

Many Democrats have said their messaging on immigration contributed to their midterm gains, and several 2020 presidential candidates have slammed the emergency declaration as they try to highlight their opposition to Trump.