President Donald Trump is expected to both sign a spending bill and declare a national emergency to secure funding for his long-promised wall along the US-Mexico border, the White House announced on Thursday.
The move would attempt to bypass congressional approval to spend billions of dollars on the border wall, which he originally vowed Mexico would pay to build.
“President Trump will sign the government funding bill, and as he has stated before, he will also take other executive action ― including a national emergency ― to ensure we stop the national security and humanitarian crisis at the border,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell privately cautioned Trump earlier this month to avoid declaring a national emergency over wall funding, warning the decision could spark backlash from members of his own party, The Washington Post reported.
Congress could pass a resolution against the declaration, McConnell reportedly warned the president earlier this month. Congressional disapproval would force Trump to consider his first-ever veto.
Several Republicans have spoken out against Trump’s threats in recent weeks to declare a national emergency. Senator Marco Rubio said last month that doing so would be “a terrible idea” and could set a bad precedent.
McConnell announced Trump’s intentions to declare a national emergency ahead of a congressional vote on a bill that would fund the government for the remainder of the fiscal year and avoid another partial shutdown.