Former CIA director John Brennan warned on Monday night that Donald Trump‘s national emergency declaration is a threat to American democracy.
In an interview with MSNBC‘s Rachel Maddow, Brennan said, “It sets a very dangerous precedent. We don’t know what Mr. Trump might decide next week or next month is going to be a national emergency.”
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) February 26, 2019
Even the Trump administration’s own statistics and assessments do not support his claim. So we decided that we were going to speak together in unison, several dozens of us that are going to take issue with it. Number two, it’s a clear circumvention of the Congress‘s budgetary authority. He went to Congress, tried to get the money for his wall, was denied it. And so this is undermining the checks and balances system that we have within our government. It is Congress‘s purview, its responsibility to appropriate funds. And for him to take moneys that have been appropriated for other causes and uses for his border wall is wrong in our view. And third, it sets a very dangerous precedent. We don’t know what Mr. Trump might decide next week or next month is going to be a national emergency. So there has to be a foundation to do something as significant as this, and the previous declarations were solidly grounded in fact and that’s why individuals who worked for both Republican and Democratic administrations decided that they were going to speak out and they were going to call the lie a lie.
Dozens of former national security officials are speaking out
Former CIA director is a frequent Trump critic, but he isn’t the only national security veteran speaking out against the president’s fake emergency.
On Monday, a group of 58 former officials, including Brennan, released a joint letter opposing Trump‘s declaration, saying there is no factual basis for it and it only “further eroded [Trump’s] credibility with foreign leaders, both friend and foe.”
“Should a genuine foreign crisis erupt, this lack of credibility will materially weaken this administration’s ability to marshal allies to support the United States, and will embolden adversaries to oppose us,” the former officials wrote in the 13-page document.
With a resolution blocking Trump‘s emergency declaration gaining bipartisan support in both the House and the Senate, the president appears to be alone in his belief that concocting a fake national emergency to build a vanity wall on the southern border is an appropriate use of his authority.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.