Democrats Backing Emergency Powers After Hating Them Under Trump Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., outline their legislative efforts to lower fuel prices during a news conference in the U.S. Capitol Visitors Center on April 28, 2022. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
By Jeffrey Rodack | Friday, 22 July 2022 10:06 AM EDT
Democrat lawmakers have been pushing President Joe Biden to declare national emergencies on abortion rights and climate despite the fact that many of those same politicians attacked then-President Donald Trump's use of emergency powers, according to the Washington Examiner.
After Trump declared a national emergency at the southern border in February 2019 as a way of securing funding to build his border wall, the move was widely criticized by Democrats, who said it was an abuse of executive power.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and then-Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., issued a joint statement blasting Trump's move.
"This is plainly a power grab by a disappointed president, who has gone outside the bounds of the law to try to get what he failed to achieve in the constitutional legislative process," they said.
"The president's actions clearly violate the Congress's exclusive power of the purse, which our founders enshrined in the Constitution. The Congress will defend our constitutional authorities in the Congress, in the Courts, and in the public, using every remedy available.
"This issue transcends partisan politics and goes to the core of the founders' conception for America, which commands Congress to limit an overreaching executive. The president's emergency declaration, if unchecked, would fundamentally alter the balance of powers, inconsistent with our founders' vision."
A House bill attempting to block Trump's declaration passed in late February 2019, but later died in the Senate. Biden ended the border emergency declaration in February 2021.
The Examiner reported that 83 members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus recently sent a letter to Biden and Health and Human Secretary Xavier Becerra asking that an emergency be declared in response to the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
The news outlet noted that 68 of the lawmakers had voted to overturn Trump's border emergency declaration.
Biden is also promising "strong executive action" to combat climate change, The Associated Press noted.
The president has not specified what action he might take. But climate advocates have urged him to declare a national climate emergency and reinstate a ban on crude oil exports.
And the Examiner reported a group of Democrat senators are calling on Biden to declare a national emergency on climate.
"Declaring the climate crisis a national emergency under the NEA [National Emergencies Act] would unlock powers to rebuild a better economy with significant, concrete actions," the group wrote in a letter to Biden.