SOUTHERN BORDER — Today President Trump declared a national emergency in a dangerous and unconstitutional grab for even more funding for border wall and militarization. Trump’s announcement of a false national emergency came after Congress voted yesterday to fund 55 miles of deadly, harmful and wasteful wall, and to provide additional funds to expand Trump’s detention capabilities and deportation force.
Trump’s unbridled cash grab is the latest in a long series of events in which his hateful administration has manufactured chaos and even held federal workers hostage to fulfill his campaign promise of an odious vanity wall.
This move to declare a false national emergency —Trump even went so far as to declare that he “didn’t need to do this”—is an egregious and possibly illegal step that again demonstrates this administration’s disregard for the checks and balances that are integral to our democracy.
It is up to Congress to take a strong stance against Trump’s hateful agenda, regardless of its manifestation, and resist building more deadly walls, fencing, or barriers, and the further militarization of the southern border, particularly as it prepares for the Fiscal Year 2020 spending negotiations.
Vicki B. Gaubeca, director of the Southern Border Communities Coalition, issued the following statement:
“The people of the southern border region are fed up with Trump’s outrageously false portrayal of our home, one of the safest places in the nation. Let me be clear: there is no national emergency here. This dangerous escalation by the Trump Administration through manufacturing crises, pushing vindictive and hateful policies—like tear-gassing children and separating families —and now the dangerous overreach in declaring a national emergency is part and parcel of Trump’s obsession to get his deadly wall and further the militarization of the southern border, regardless of the destruction and waste it creates. Building walls, be it fencing or any other barrier, and further militarizing the border is unnecessary, irresponsible and unacceptable—and nothing more than political theater.
Congress must act quickly to put a stop to this presidential abuse of power. Border communities have already endured 700 miles of walls built in our towns, neighborhoods and even backyards. Walls and hyper-militarization don’t make us safer, but do hurt the 15 million people who call the southern border region home, endanger wildlife and the environment, and are a colossal waste of taxpayer dollars.”
Johana Bencomo, co-chair of Southern Border Communities Coalition and director of organizing for NM Comunidades en Acción y de Fe (CAFé) gave the following statement:
"The real emergency is that we have a President that has failed the American people by manufacturing false crises at the border, and even going so far as to hold the government hostage. Now, President Trump’s dangerous power grab in his obsession for his deadly, harmful and wasteful wall will put our nation’s democracy at risk. An overwhelming number of Americans, including the 15 million people who call the southern border their home, reject this harmful and unnecessary wall. Declaring a national emergency to further his obsession with the militarization of the southern border is not in the best interests of the people of our nation.
It has never been clearer than today, that Congress must stand firm against Trump’s dangerous power grab. The border region is not a war zone where military-style enforcement takes precedence over the rights enshrined in the Constitution. We need policies that revitalize our communities, not militarize them.”
ABOUT THE SOUTHERN BORDER COMMUNITIES COALITION
The Southern Border Communities Coalition (SBCC) brings together organizations from San Diego, California, to Brownsville, Texas, to ensure that border enforcement policies and practices are accountable and fair, respect human dignity and human rights, and prevent the loss of life in the region.