GOP leader unsure on legality of Trump’s emergency declaration

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMcConnell protege emerges as Kentucky's next rising star Hillicon Valley: Schumer questions Army over use of TikTok | Federal court rules against random searches of travelers' phones | Groups push for election security funds in stopgap bill | Facebook's new payment feature | Disney+ launch hit by glitches McConnell, GOP leaders say they won't be watching House impeachment hearing MORE (R-Ky.) says he has yet to determine whether President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump faces high stakes in meeting with Erdoğan amid impeachment drama Democrats worry they don't have right candidate to beat Trump Trump threatening to fire Mulvaney: report MORE’s emergency declaration to build border barriers is legal.

Asked for his legal opinion after meeting with a Department of Justice lawyer at a Tuesday luncheon of the GOP conference, McConnell said, “I haven’t reached a total conclusion.”

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McConnell said while he graduated from law school, he’s not an expert on constitutional questions of separations of power.

“I wouldn’t go, to me, for a simple will,” he said, while noting, “I did go to law school.”

“We had real serious lawyers in there discussing that very issue,” he said, summarizing the lunchtime discussion with Vice President Pence and the senior lawyer from Justice.

“We had a very fulsome discussion of this issue in the conference at noon today with the vice president,” McConnell added.

He described his GOP colleagues as “extremely interested” in the topic.

“We really do think there’s a crisis at the border,” he added.

Three Republican senators — Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsGOP senators warn against Trump firing intelligence community official This week: House kicks off public phase of impeachment inquiry Senate panel clears controversial Trump court pick MORE (Maine), Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiGoogle sparks new privacy fears over health care data This week: House kicks off public phase of impeachment inquiry GOP senators plan to tune out impeachment week MORE (Alaska) and Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisThis week: House kicks off public phase of impeachment inquiry Progressive veterans group launches campaign labeling Trump as a 'national security threat' Trump rules out total rollback of Chinese tariffs MORE (N.C.) — say they will support a Democratic-sponsored resolution of disapproval on the emergency declaration.

McConnell said it will come up for a vote on the Senate floor before the recess scheduled for mid-March.