Legal battle looms after Donald Trump 'national emergency' declaration; California will be first to sue

New York: Legal pushback to US President Donald Trump’s “emergency declaration” is coming thick and fast after Trump’s dumpster fire style press conference in the White House Rose Garden where he predicted that the Supreme Court will eventually give him a “fair shake” and “we’ll win”. California will be the first to sue, according to latest reporting.

Harvard Law School professor Lawrence Tribe says Trump winning this fight in the nation's highest court is entirely possible because "courts are not always realistic, they sometimes defer to the President." "I suppose it has something to do with (Brett) Kavanaugh being there and the Supreme Court may be divided 5-4 if things really go the distance", says Tribe.

"This is going to be a protracted legal fight. Something this huge can spin on something very small - how the chief justice interprets the technical details", Tribe told MSNBC Friday.

Trump made his big announcement today did that after he talked about China, the U.K, Syria and North Korea's Kim Jong Un in a rambling monologue that went something like this: “I could do the wall over a longer period of time. I didn’t need to do this. But I’d rather do it much faster. And I don’t have to do it for the election. I’ve already done a lot of wall for the election. 2020. And the only reason we’re up here talking about this is because of the election—because they want to try to win an election, which it looks like they’re not going to be able to do.”

 Legal battle looms after Donald Trump national emergency declaration; California will be first to sue

US President Donald Trump speaks at the Rose Garden Friday. AP

There you have it, Trump declared a national emergency for his re-election campaign in 2020. And the wall acts as a good mnemonic device to remind him what to say when he goes off tangent. Joshua Green writes in Devil's Bargain:“They needed a trick, a mnemonic device. In the summer of 2014, they found one that clicked.” That was the "wall", the one that reminds Trump about the power of illegal immigration to manipulate popular sentiment ahead of an election.

Trump's announcement comes after US Congress refused to give wall money that Trump wanted. The money they did allow $1.4 billion is far below the $5.7 billion Trump insisted he needed and would finance just a quarter of the more than 200 miles (322 kilometers) he wanted this year.

Trump is expected declare a national security emergency under the National Emergencies Act of 1976. Lawmakers, activists and state officials are planning to challenge what they say is a presidential "end-run" around the Constitution. What's to come is being compared with the burst of litigation against Trump’s travel-ban policy in 2017. Trump finally won that in a 5-4 ruling at the Supreme Court but well after the policy was diluted and repeatedly blocked for months. The only difference here is that the emergency declaration has been a long time coming. All sides have already had enough time to sharpen their knives for the coming onslaught. Alexandria Ocasia Cortez one of the highest profile freshman Congress members confirmed that she is “not going to let the President declare a fake national emergency without a fight.” Ocasio-Cortez, will introduce bill to block Trump’s emergency declaration.

Updated Date: Feb 16, 2019 01:10:15 IST