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Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Tuesday, February 26th, 2019

Bipartisan majority in U.S. House votes to terminate Trump’s fake national emergency

A bipartisan majority of the United House of Representatives has voted to terminate the fake national emergency declared earlier this month by Donald Trump, setting up a day of reckoning in the United States Senate that will force Republicans to publicly choose between their allegiance to Trump or the U.S. Constitution.

“Is your oath of office to Donald Trump or is your oath of office to the Constitution of the United States?,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi asked Republicans in her floor speech urging approval of House Joint Resolution 46. “You cannot let him undermine the strength of your pledge to protect and defend the Constitution.”

“We in the People’s House are the keepers of this Constitution,” Pelosi added.

“We in the Congress are the keepers of this Constitution. We in the Congress, in Article I, the Congress of the United States, spelled out very clearly in the Constitution, the powers given to the Legislative branch: the powers of the purse, the power to declare war – powers enumerated very carefully by our Founders.”

In the end, just thirteen Republicans crossed over to join two hundred and thirty-two Democrats in voting for the historic and vitally needed resolution. The final vote was two hundred and forty-five to one hundred and eighty-two.

The roll call from the Pacific Northwest was as follows:

Voting Aye [For the Constitution]: Democratic Representatives Suzan DelBene, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Pramila Jayapal, Kim Schrier, Adam Smith, Denny Heck (WA), Suzanne Bonamici, Earl Blumenauer,  Kurt Schrader (OR); Republican Representatives Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Jaime Herrera-Beutler (WA), Greg Walden (OR)

Voting Nay [For Donald Trump]: Republican Representatives Dan Newhouse (WA), Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson (ID), Greg Gianforte (MT), Don Young (AK)

Not Voting: Democratic Representative Pete DeFazio (OR)

Washington State’s congressional delegation was nearly unanimous in bucking Trump thanks to the aye votes of Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Jaime Herrera-Beutler, which will likely come as a surprise to many Cascadia Advocate readers. Only Dan Newhouse betrayed his oath of office to side with Trump.

Oregon’s congressional delegation was also one vote shy of unanimously rebuking Trump because Democratic Representative Pete DeFazio missed the vote.

“The vote today to terminate President Trump’s unlawful national emergency declaration sends a clear message to the President and this Administration that the new House majority is serious about oversight and accountability,” said U.S. Representative Adam Smith, Chair of the House Armed Services Committe.

“House Democrats are not going to stand by while the President abuses his power by declaring a national emergency to build his wall,” Smith added. “This national emergency declaration is built on xenophobic lies and mischaracterizations about immigrants, and it is dangerous and wrong for the President to circumvent Congress by stealing funds from military readiness for his political agenda.”

“I strongly support Congressman Castro’s resolution to terminate the national emergency. We will continue to fight this unlawful power grab.”

The United States Senate is now required by law to take up the resolution. Three Republicans have already said they will vote yes (Susan Collins, Thom Tillis, Lisa Murkowski), which means the resolution is close to having the votes that it needs to pass. Collins and Tillis will face the voters in 2020 and are considered vulnerable.

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