House Democrats are set to try and override US President Donald Trump’s first veto in a vote that seems doomed to failure.
The vote, should it fail, would grant Trump a significant victory over the Democrats, securing his national emergency declaration and allowing for him to proceed with building a barrier along the country’s southern border.
Should the Tuesday March 26th vote fail, Trump will be able to shift some $3.6-billion from military construction projects to his proposed border wall with Mexico. The wall has been one of his biggest electoral promises and featured prominently during his campaign trail, although he claimed that the wall would be financed by Mexico, not the taxpayer.
When Trump declared a national emergency, Democrats were united in their opposition against the move. In fact, some Republicans also objected to the move, suggesting that Trump was possibly abusing his presidential powers.
Congress then moved to stop Trump’s declaration, and was successful in its efforts. But the measure fell well short of the two-third majority needed to override his veto. Therefore, the expectation is that the upcoming vote in opposition to his veto will fail.
"The president will be fine in the House," said minority leader Kevin McCarthy. "The veto will not be overridden."
Even though his veto could remain intact, there still exists the possibility that Trump will still be unable to spend the money on the wall, as a result of the ensuing lawsuits that may result from this move. These lawsuits could take years to resolve.
The Pentagon has already sent through a list of military projects from which money could be diverted. Although the list is not definitive, some Democrats have said the move could compromise national security.
According to AP, the House approved the resolution to block Trump's emergency with a vote of 245 to 182 in February. But on Tuesday, March 27th, opponents will need to reach 288 votes to prevail.
Should the vote fail, the Senate will not try to override Trump’s veto.