Pelosi Warns Democrats Could Declare Emergency to Seize Americans’ Guns
House speaker says Democratic president could use measure to enforce gun control
Clearly outraged by news that President Donald Trump is declaring a national emergency to build his proposed wall along the US Southern Border, Nancy Pelosi lashed out during a press conference, warning that Democrats could also use the measure to enforce gun control and seize Americans' weapons.
House Speaker Pelosi (D-CA) warned Republicans on Thursday to consider the “threshold that they are crossing” by supporting President Trump’s declaration of a national emergency at the border.
The Democratic leader said the move could open the door to future Democrats in the White House declaring a national emergency to force issues like gun control.
After forcing the president's hand on the issue of border security, Pelosi said in a separate statement that "declaring a national emergency would be a lawless act, a gross abuse of the power."
Declaring a national emergency would be a lawless act, a gross abuse of the power of the presidency and a desperate attempt to distract from the fact that @realDonaldTrump broke his core promise to have Mexico pay for his wall.— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) February 14, 2019
Trump is signing a spending bill on Friday to keep the government open while declaring a national emergency to get more funding for his border wall.
In response to the move, Pelosi said Republicans “have some unease about it no matter what they say” because “if the president can declare an emergency on something that he has created as an emergency, an illusion that he wants to convey, just think of what a president with much different values can present to the American people.”
Pelosi said she is not advocating presidents doing an “end run around Congress,” but warned that a “Democratic president can” declare national emergencies as well on issues like gun control.
“The precedent that the president is setting is something that should be met with great unease and dismay by the Republicans,” Pelosi added.
“You want to talk about a national emergency?" she continued
"Let’s talk about today—the one-year anniversary of another manifestation of the epidemic of gun violence in America,” Pelosi said, in reference to the one-year anniversary of the Parkland shooting.
"That’s a national emergency."
“Why don’t you declare that a national emergency, Mr. President?
"I wish you would.”
She emphasized that Republicans should “have some dismay about the door that they are opening, the threshold that they are crossing” with Trump’s expected declaration of a national emergency at the border.