Arizona legislators react to shutdown deal, pending national emergency

Feb 15, 2019, 4:45 AM | Updated: 7:37 am
(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)...
(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)
(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

PHOENIX — National lawmakers from Arizona reacted Thursday night to Congress passing a border security compromise that prevents another federal government shutdown.

They also commented on President Donald Trump’s plan to sign the deal but still push for a border wall by declaring a national emergency.

Republicans supported Trump’s course of action.

“I am encouraged that President Trump will immediately declare a national emergency to build the wall,” U.S. Rep Andy Biggs said in a statement.

“Though executive action should always be taken lightly – and never outside of constitutional bounds – President Trump correctly views the situation at the border as an emergency.”

Biggs tweeted a letter to Trump signed by him and other members of Congress calling the shutdown deal “bad” and claiming it will not secure the border.

U.S Rep. Paul Gosar said Trump “should take all measures necessary to protect American lives.”

U.S. Rep. Debbie Lesko echoed the support.

“I support the president in this action,” she told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Arizona’s Morning News on Friday.

“If anyone has gone down to the border and talked to … the boots on the ground that actually deal with the illegal immigration, they will tell you this is a national emergency.”

Democrats argued that there was no emergency on the border.

“Whether shutting down the government for his wall or an emergency declaration, Trump continues to manufacture a crisis at the Southern border and reinforce it with fearmongering and outright lies,” U.S. Rep. Raul Grijalva said in a statement, adding that he did not vote for the spending bill because he believed it rewarded Trump’s behavior.

U.S. Rep. Greg Stanton said he supported the shutdown compromise but also criticized Trump’s plan.

“Declarations like this must only be used for real national emergencies—not to make up for political failure—and should not be used as a work-around to the legislative process,” he said in a statement.

“This is the wrong way to govern, and the president is only creating a dangerous precedent for our country.”

U.S. Rep. Tom O’Halleran said in a statement, “While this deal is far from perfect, it sets us on the right course to address the pressing needs of the nation, including comprehensive immigration reform … and most importantly, a bipartisan budget.”

He didn’t mention the president’s plan to declare a national emergency.

U.S. Rep. Ruben Gallego tweeted:

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Arizona legislators react to shutdown deal, pending national emergency