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
 
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."
 
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"[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.
 
 
Several Senate Republicans have declined to say how they would vote on a potential resolution of disapproval. Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP rep to introduce constitutional amendment to limit Supreme Court seats to 9 The Hill's Morning Report - Dems contemplate big election and court reforms Court-packing becomes new litmus test on left MORE (R-Ky.) sidestepped answering the question on Tuesday, saying he would want to see what the president does.
 
"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.
 
"I hope he doesn't do it," Sen. John CornynJohn CornynGOP rep to introduce constitutional amendment to limit Supreme Court seats to 9 Court-packing becomes new litmus test on left Cornyn shrugs off Trump criticism of 'SNL' MORE (R-Texas), who is close to McConnell, told reporters. "I think there's a number of good reasons to shy away from that."
 
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."