Napolitano claims Trump violated separation of powers 3 times in last week

Fox News legal analyst Andrew NapolitanoAndrew Peter NapolitanoFox's Napolitano warns Trump: 'A felony' to accept foreign help for reelection Fox's Napolitano rips Democrats for having John Dean testify: 'It's indefensible' Fox News legal analyst says Mueller 'dropped the ball' by deciding not to indict Trump MORE claimed President TrumpDonald John Trump2020 Democrats spar over socialism ahead of first debate Senate passes .5 billion border bill, setting up fight with House 'Teflon Don' avoids the scorn of the 'family values' GOP — again MORE has violated the separation of powers three times in the last week alone.

The former New Jersey Supreme Court judge said on "Judge Napolitano’s Chambers" on Fox News that Trump has been "abandoning separation of powers Madison so carefully crafted." 

Napolitano highlighted what he said were three instances, calling it a "very dangerous trend."

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One such instance was Trump directing acting Secretary of Defense Patrick ShanahanPatrick Michael ShanahanTrump pick brings scrutiny to 'revolving door' between Pentagon, industry New Defense chief: Our 'priorities remain unchanged' The Hill's Morning Report - Crunch time arrives for 2020 Dems with debates on deck MORE not to purchase a missile defense system that Congress called for and authorized, instead instructing him to use the funding for a portion of the wall along the Texas-Mexico border, Napolitano said.

"He asked Congress for the money, and the Congress said no, and he took the money anyway," he said. "That violates the separation of powers."

Napolitano also cited Trump telling Shanahan to send troops to secure the southern border and Trump’s decision to impose a 25 percent tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, which he called a tax.

As many economists have, Napolitano argued that tariffs are not paid by the country they are imposed upon, in this case China, as the cost of tariffs are actually passed on to the consumer — hence the term "tax."

Napolitano noted that presidents exercising increased power predates Trump and is made possible when Congress fails to do its job properly.

"There was a time in American history when the Congress wrote the laws, and the president enforced the laws, and the courts interpreted them," Napolitano said in his opening.

Napolitano, a target of attacks from Trump in recent weeks, has become one of the president's most vocal critics and one of a few from the president’s favorite news network.