GOP senator: National emergency would be a 'tough vote' for Trump to win

GOP senator: National emergency would be a 'tough vote' for Trump to win
© Greg Nash
Sen. John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneHillicon Valley: Trump takes flak for not joining anti-extremism pact | Phone carriers largely end sharing of location data | Huawei pushes back on ban | Florida lawmakers demand to learn counties hacked by Russians | Feds bust 0M cybercrime group Senate Commerce chair to renew push for regs on self-driving vehicles Hillicon Valley: Facebook co-founder calls for breaking up company | Facebook pushes back | Experts study 2020 candidates to offset 'deepfake' threat | FCC votes to block China Mobile | Groups, lawmakers accuse Amazon of violating children's privacy MORE (S.D.), the No. 2 Republican in the Senate, on Tuesday appeared to warn that President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump: 'I will not let Iran have nuclear weapons' Rocket attack hits Baghdad's Green Zone amid escalating tensions: reports Buttigieg on Trump tweets: 'I don't care' MORE could fail to prevent a handful of Republicans from voting with Democrats to block a national emergency declaration to construct a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.
Thune told reporters that if a resolution of disapproval initially passes the Senate with less than 67 votes, the amount needed to override a veto, Trump "would win it on the back side."
"[But] the concern I guess I would have is that on the front end that vote, based on the concerns that a lot of our members have expressed, that it might be a, you know, a tough vote to win here in the Senate," Thune said.
He added that when Trump moves forward he needs to have a "clear-eyed understanding of kind of what the state of play is up here and of the concerns that our members have, both with respect to the precedent and the constitutionality."
Trump has refused to rule out issuing a national emergency declaration to build a border wall if Congress can't reach a deal on border security by Feb. 15 to prevent another partial government shutdown.
If Trump declares a national emergency, Democrats would be able to force a vote on a resolution to try to block him. That vote would need only a simple majority to pass.
"We don't know what route the president's going to take, so I'm not going to speculate on it at this point," McConnell said. "I'm going to withhold judgement about that until we see what he does."
Republicans, including McConnell, have publicly urged Trump to avoid declaring a national emergency, arguing that it would get bogged down in the courts and set a bad precedent for a future Democratic president to follow.
Cornyn declined to say if he thought enough GOP senators would vote with Democrats to block a national emergency.
"I think that's a possibility," Cornyn said when asked if he thought there would be a resolution of disapproval vote. "That's why I'm urging the president to tread carefully."