After compromising with Congress on a bill to avert another disastrous government shutdown, US President Donald Trump is set to declare a national emergency to secure funding for his border wall with Mexico.

Senate leader Mitch McConnell made the announcement today, which was swiftly backed up by White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders.

Scrapping White House letterhead for the iPhone Note app, Sanders revealed Trump will sign off on a crucial funding bill which does not include the AUD $7 billion he has demanded to construct the barrier.

Trump will instead try to sidestep Congress and use his executive powers to wrangle funds for his numero uno campaign promise, Sanders said.

Trump’s initial demands for that cash were rebuffed by Democrats in Congress last year. The political gridlock over that funding led to the United States’ longest-ever government shutdown, which led to thousands of government workers going without pay over Christmas. 

A temporary funding agreement was reached late last month. Congress was desperate to avoid a re-run of that shutdown scenario, but simply couldn’t pass funding for the wall without the Democrats. After some intense brokering with Trump to secure his signature, this is the outcome: the bill will pass, but Trump will attempt a wild new avenue to grab that wall cash.

Will it work? Fuck knows, but Democratic leaders have already signalled they will assess all legal options available to them to stop the funding of what they see as a big, stupid, ineffective, and racist concession to one of Trump’s most ridiculous promises.

That said, a state of emergency opens a whole slew of powers not available under regular circumstances. As always, it’s only going to get worse from here.

Source: CNN
Image: Jim Lo Scalzo / EPA