Dozens of national emergencies have been made throughout history, but President Trump’s may set a precedent.
Friday, February 15, President Trump declared a national emergency to build a border wall. This was done hours before in an effort to avert another government shutdown.
According to the New York Times, 58 national emergencies have been declared since the National Emergencies Act was passed in 1976.
John Brown University Professor, Dr. Daniel Bennett said previous national emergencies have been tied to things such as wars and economic problems facing the nation. President Trump’s executive order may make history in a much different and bigger way.
Bennett believes the President’s move could give future presidents more leeway in declaring a national emergency.
“It’s not hard to imagine in this scenario a future democratic president getting into office and saying, ‘well, we do have a national emergency of gun violence, or a national emergency of climate change so we’re going to issue all of these orders in the name of an emergency.’ What do lawmakers do then?” said Bennett.
Bennett adds if challenges are made, President Trump’s declaration will go to the supreme court where it could be struck down.
From Little Rock, Attorney General Leslie Rutledge issued the following statement:
“From day one, President Trump has been committed to securing America’s southern border and today he honored that promise,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Following decades of failed policies, I support these efforts to restore security and integrity to our immigration system.”
The Washington County Democratic Women issued this comment on their Facebook:
“This is truly terrifying …
The moment the president declares a “national emergency”—a decision that is entirely within his discretion—he is able to set aside many of the legal limits on his authority.”