WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump on Friday declared a national emergency at the southern border while acknowledging that rapid construction of a wall is not a necessity, but rather his preference. In justifying the extraordinary step, he brushed aside his administration’s conclusions that drugs come into the country primarily at official points of entry, not over remote territory that a barrier could seal off. Trump invoked what his aides called the “common authority” of presidents to take unilateral action through the declaration of a national emergency. But there’s nothing common about a president taking command of billions of dollars without the approval of Congress to pay for a campaign promise. “I could do the wall over a longer period of time,” Trump said, raising questions about why he sees an emergency unfolding today. “I didn’t need to do this, but I’d rather do it much faster.” At a Rose Garden news conference, Trump also claimed progress on wall construction that hasn’t occurred. A look at some of his comments: TRUMP: “I’ve built a lot of wall.” THE FACTS: He’s built no new miles of wall. His new construction to date has replaced existing barriers. This month marks the start… Read full this story
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