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Trump declares national emergency to access $3.6B for border wall

Trump in Rose Garden
Trump declares a national emergency in the White House Rose Garden. Photo: Chip Somodevilla via Getty Images

During today's Rose Garden announcement, President Trump laid out the administration’s plans to free up roughly $8 billion to be put toward building a wall on the southern border, $3.6 billion of which will be accessed through the declaration of a national emergency.

By the numbers: On a call with reporters Friday morning, acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney announced the breakdown of those funds.

  • From Congress: $1.375 billion will come from the budget deal that both chambers of Congress passed on Thursday and Trump signed on Friday afternoon.
  • Through executive action: Roughly $600 million will be pulled from the Treasury's drug forfeiture fund, and $2.5 billion from the Department of Defense's drug interdiction program.
  • From a national emergency declaration: Trump will declare a national emergency to free up about $3.6 billion from the DoD's military construction fund.

Mulvaney noted that no money is being pulled from the Texas disaster relief fund to build the wall.

Worth noting: $8 billion is more than the $5.7 billion Trump initially demanded from Democrats. A senior administration official said that they are freeing up an extra $2.3 billion to ensure that they have enough money to build the wall.

How it's playing: Trump's decision to invoke his emergency powers has drawn backlash from both Democrats and some Republicans who are concerned about the precedent it could set for future administrations.

What's next: The $3.6 billion being accessed through the emergency declaration will likely be challenged by the courts.

How it's playing: Trump's decision to invoke his emergency powers has drawn backlash from both Democrats and some Republicans who are concerned about the precedent it could set for future administrations.

  • Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer said in a statement: "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."
  • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, meanwhile, said: "President Trump’s decision to announce emergency action is the predictable and understandable consequence of Democrats’ decision to put partisan obstruction ahead of the national interest."

Go deeper: Why Trump is declaring an emergency