If the partial government shutdown continues without a congressional deal to fund the wall, President Trump says, he’ll be forced to shut down the border entirely. And he could do it, with or without Congress’ cooperation.
“We will be forced to close the Southern Border entirely if the Obstructionist Democrats do not give us the money to finish the Wall & also change the ridiculous immigration laws that our Country is saddled with,” the president tweeted Friday, one week after the start of the partial shutdown.
We will be forced to close the Southern Border entirely if the Obstructionist Democrats do not give us the money to finish the Wall & also change the ridiculous immigration laws that our Country is saddled with. Hard to believe there was a Congress & President who would approve!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 28, 2018
And while this claim might send the cadre of Trump’s usual critics into a violent fainting spell, closing the border is completely within his power.
As Conservative Review’s Daniel Horowitz explained back in October, President Trump not only has the inherent executive authority to close the border, as well as other immigration powers delegated by past Congresses, but he also has the popular mandate that got him elected.
Federal law “allows the president, whenever he finds that ‘the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States,’ to ‘suspend’ all forms of immigration ‘for such period as he shall deem necessary,’” Horowitz explains. It also “grants the president an almost equal level of authority to subject entry of all aliens entering or departing to ‘such reasonable rules, regulations, and orders, and subject to such limitations and exceptions as the President may prescribe.’”
“If demanding that all immigrants enter legally or apply for asylum in a safe and controlled environment at a consulate rather than at a border controlled by some of the most dangerous people in the world is not a ‘reasonable rule,’” Horowitz concludes, “I’m not sure what is.”
President Trump has long made the case that physical border security is critical to America’s interests, both for our national security and the preservation of our national sovereignty. Closing the border down until the American people get the security they voted for would be a logical next step.