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Trump's Wall Emergency May End One Conflict but Create Another

  • President declares ‘absolute right’ to declare emergency
  • Supreme Court may get last word on declaration’s legality
Aerial view of the US-Mexico border fence seen from Playas de Tijuana, Baja California state. 

Aerial view of the US-Mexico border fence seen from Playas de Tijuana, Baja California state. 

Photographer: Guillermo Arias/AFP via Getty Images

President Donald Trump might end one conflict with Congress over funding for his long-sought Mexican border wall by invoking national emergency powers, but he’s almost certain to ignite another, with repercussions Republicans may regret in the future.

By declaring an emergency, Trump would be seeking to unlock the money needed to start new sections of the wall without Congressional approval, but the move would be fraught with risk. Members of Congress, landowners and environmentalists may sue, and legal experts said judges may eventually derail Trump’s gambit altogether.