1. He arguably undermined the legal basis for declaring a national emergency: “I could do the wall over a longer period of time. I didn’t need to do this. But I’d rather do it much faster,” Trump said when describing how the border spending bill gave him many of the things he wanted, but that it “skimped” on his border wall.
2. He said it was a “lie” that the preponderance of illegal drugs crossing the border do so at ports of entry — when the DEA reported in 2018 that it was the most common method for transnational criminal organizations: “When you look and when you listen to politicians — in particular, certain Democrats — they say it all comes through the port of entry. It’s wrong. It’s wrong. It’s just a lie. It’s all a lie.”
3. He said Japanese Prime Minister Abe recommended him for the Nobel Peace Prize for his work on North Korea, which has created an uproar in Japan: “In fact, I think I can say this: Prime Minister Abe of Japan gave me the most beautiful copy of a letter that he sent to the people who give out a thing called the Nobel Prize. He said, ‘I have nominated you…'”
4. He claimed Obama was “close to starting a big war with North Korea,” which former Obama White House aides deny: “And I don’t want to speak for him, but I believe he would have gone to war with North Korea. I think he was ready to go to war. In fact, he told me he was so close to starting a big war with North Korea.”
5. After signing criminal-justice reform into law, he appeared to endorse China’s policy of giving the death penalty to drug dealers:“And when I asked President Xi, I said, ‘Do you have a drug problem?’ ‘No, no, no.’ I said, ‘You have 1.4 billion people. What do you mean you have no drug problem?’ ‘No, we don’t have a drug problem.’ I said, ‘Why?’ ‘Death penalty. We give death penalty to people that sell drugs.’ End of problem.”
Yes, Trump’s remarks were three days ago. But that doesn’t mean what he said on Friday was old news. Quite the contrary…
Indeed, he created problems for his lawyers in defending his national emergency, for Japanese PM Abe, for Barack Obama, and for those who want to tout his sincerity on criminal-justice reform.
“This is the president using emergency powers to thwart the will of Congress”
For all of the focus on the Russia investigation, whether or not the president has obstructed justice, and whether or not he’s violated the Emoluments Clause — is the national emergency Trump announced on Friday a clear violation of Trump’s oath of office to preserve/protect the Constitution?