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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 1/6/19

Claiming a 'national emergency' to justify building a $5-billion wall: At Last! A Workable Reason to Impeach the MF

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By Dave Lindorff

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Liberals have been calling for the new Democratic House to file articles of impeachment against Donald Trump ever since winning the House in the Nov. 8 election in 2016, but there has been this obstacle: Nobody believes that Republicans who control the Senate will allow a House impeachment to move to a trial in the Upper House of Congress, much less contribute the needed two-thirds of the vote to convict and remove him from office.

But now Trump may be handing both the House Democrats and Republicans frustrated with Trump's madness the issue that could go all the way: the President's stated intent to bypass Congress with its Constitution-enshrined power of the purse by declaring a "national emergency" so he can build his wall along the whole Mexican border on his own dubious authority as Major Domo.

Here's the problem for Trump aka the MF. As "national emergencies" go, illegal immigration across the border from Mexico just doesn't cut it. Trump can claim, as he has been doing since he began campaigning for President in 2016, that "rapists, murderers, gangs and drug dealers" are "pouring across" the unguarded border with Mexico, not to mention hordes of illegals stealing jobs from Americans, but it just ain't the reality.

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According to the New York Times , illegal border crossings from Mexico have been showing a long decline from the 1980s to the mid 2000s, when the government was apprehending between 1-1.6 million foreigners crossing at the southern border each year to this past year, when the rate had fallen to under 300,000. (Even the much maligned and exaggerated Honduran "caravan" of asylum seekers that had Trump was issuing his dire threats about, and that was awash in our corporate media, would have made no real impact on the current average rate of "illegal" entry into the US even if they had all somehow figured out a way to cross the border illegally.)

Here's a chart of monthly captures of immigrants crossing the Mexican border illegally based on data from the US Customs and Border Protection Service:


(Image by Unknown Owner)   Details   DMCA

Immigration returns and removals (source: U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security)

That trend line certainly doesn't look like a national emergency type of crisis does it?

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If you want to see a real national emergency, try this:


(Image by CBP Photography)   Details   DMCA

Puerto Rico after being hit by Hurricane Maria. Recall that President Trump responded by flying in a bunch of paper towels on Air Force One with him, which he tossed to desperate victims.

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Dave Lindorff is a founding member of the collectively-owned, journalist-run online newspaper www.thiscantbehappening.net. He is a columnist for Counterpunch, is author of several recent books ("This Can't Be Happening! Resisting the (more...)
 
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