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Hoyer Floor Remarks on the Termination of President Trump’s National Emergency Declaration

WASHINGTON, DC - House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (MD) spoke on the Floor today in support of a resolution to terminate President Trump’s declaration of a national emergency at the southern border. Below is a link to the video and excerpts from his remarks:     “This issue is not about a wall. It is about the Constitution. It is about this institution. It is about the balance that we say is equal between the Article I institution and the Article II institution. That's important to remember. That is why this argument is so very important. It is not about just a single policy. It is about the kind of government that our Founding Fathers instituted, which has been the envy of the world and the example to many.”

"I was at the border… I saw a lot of heartbreak and challenge, but I did not see a national emergency that would justify the President ignoring the Constitution and trying to make funding decisions without Congressional approval.”

"The President admitted on February 15 that this is not a true emergency when he said, and I quote: ‘I could do the wall over a longer period of time. I didn't need to do this, but I’d rather do it much faster.’ Not that I needed to do it much faster, I just rather would do it much faster.”

“Now, Congress has a chance to answer the President and make it clear that he cannot make an end-run around the Constitution and claim power reserved for the taxpayer’s Representatives.”

"Mr. Speaker, the Congress of the United States needs to have a spine, and not lay at the feet of the President of the United States and say, ‘whatever you want, sir.’ That's not what the people elected us to do. We are their Representatives, not the President's Representatives.”

"If we vote yes [on this resolution], we will say Congress is still the voice of the American people. We will say that we are still faithful to the oath we took to protect the Constitution and laws of our land. And we will say America, as our founders promised, has no sovereign but we, the people. We – not me, not I – we, the people. We must not allow the President to set a dangerous precedent stripping Congress of its power of the purse… We must not allow him to set the precedent whereby any chief executive, Republican or Democrat, can declare an emergency any time he or she doesn't agree with Congress' funding.”

"Let us act and do so in one powerful voice – not as Democrats, not as Republicans, but as Americans, as Representatives [for the] people who have put their faith in us to make a judgment to protect their country, their Constitution.”

"If any Member cares at all about the equal status of the Article I branch of the Constitution, he or she should vote for this resolution. Vote for conscience and Constitution, not party and politics.”