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'Astonishing Abuse Of Power': Polis Denounces Trump's National Emergency Declaration

WASHINGTON (CBS4) President Donald Trump -- dissatisfied with the funding Congress is providing him for barriers at the southern border -- will sign the bill to fund the government and declare a national emergency to free up more funds to build his wall.

President Trump announces he will sign an emergency declaration to get funding for border wall.

Posted by CBS Denver on Friday, February 15, 2019

The president's decision to declare a national emergency is already facing criticism from Democrats and some Republicans -- as well as potential lawsuits. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi didn't rule out a legal challenge on Thursday.

Elected officials in Colorado were quick to respond.

Gov. Jared Polis issued the following statement:

"President Donald Trump's plan to circumvent Congress and declare a state of emergency for his personal vanity project is an astonishing abuse of power. This is not only a waste of taxpayer dollars but a distraction from the many real issues that affect hardworking Coloradans.

While the president tries to separate us— Coloradans, and my administration, will continue to unite by building a Colorado for all."

Rep. Jason Crow (D-CO) issued the following statement:

"Congress wasn't willing to fund the President's ineffective and wasteful border wall, so instead he declared a national emergency. His declaration represents a dangerous abuse of presidential power. There is no 'national emergency' at our border. This President knows it, his enablers in Congress know it, and our democracy will not tolerate it."

Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) said in a Tweet that Trump's move "violates our system of checks and balances."

Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO) called it a "fake national emergency" and "an abuse of power."

Republican Congressman Ken Buck talked with our partners at KOA News Radio, saying: "This is nothing new. The Democrats want to make it sound like some new overreach. The reality is it's been used by a lot of presidents for a lot of different reasons."

Congress has given Trump about $1.4 billion for border barriers, well below the $5.7 billion Trump has insisted he needed to build a wall.

(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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