There’s no other way to put it: On Thursday, 12 Senate Republicans stabbed President Donald Trump in the back. They broke from the GOP to join Democrats in voting to block the national emergency declaration over the southern border wall. The 12 are as follows:
Sens. Susan Collins (M.E), Rand Paul (K.Y.), Mitt Romney (U.T.), Mike Lee (U.T.), Lisa Murkowski (A.K.), Lamar Alexander (T.N.), Marco Rubio (F.L.), Roy Blunt (M.O.), Pat Toomey (P.A.), Rob Portman (O.H.), Jerry Moran (K.S.) and Jerry Wicker (M.S.).
After breezing by the Democrat-run House, the resolution passed in the Senate 59-41. Now, with an all-but-certain Trump veto, a battle with Congress is inevitable. AIt’s the first-ever veto battle under the Trump administration.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 14, 2019
“I’ll do a veto,” Trump said form the Oval Office. “It’s not going to be overturned.”
In a way, the traitorous Senators’ votes were a moot point.
A total two-thirds of the House and Senate will be needed to overturn the president’s veto, a task that looks impossible particularly if the congressmen and women uphold their previous votes.
Reports leading up to the vote suggested that many more Republicans could rebuke Trump’s declaration. Sen. Thom Tills, R-N.C. was reportedly voting for the resolution, but he swapped last minute, according to The Hill.
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“We have to recognize that we have a crisis at the border, 76,000 people crossing illegally in February alone. We have narcotics flooding our country, poisoning our children and adults of all ages,” Tills said.
In the hours before the vote Trump warned his fellow Republicans: a vote against the national emergency is a vote for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-C.A. The president’s warning was ignored by the 12 dissenting Republicans.
It could be detrimental for their 2020 midterms campaigns as well. Should Trump be reelected as the president, their disloyalty might come full circle to hurt them in their own districts — many of whom voted for Trump. Pundits suggested that Cory Gardner, R-C.O., secured a future vote of confidence from the president, where he’s expected to run a close race with a Democratic challenger.
No doubt the Senate vote has ignited controversy and infighting among the GOP, but beyond the mess, supporters of the border wall can let go a sigh of release.
The humanitarian crisis is likely solved with the veto. 67 Republican swaps are needed between the House and Senate to shut it down.
And if the illegal immigrants keep showing up in droves at the southern border, it’s likely more congressmen and women will change their minds and support the president.
—The Horn editorial team