Sen. Roy Blunt explains why he broke away from president on emergency declaration vote

WASHINGTON (KY3/AP) -- The Republican-run Senate firmly rejected President Donald Trump's declaration of a national emergency at the southwest border on Thursday, setting up a veto fight and dealing him a conspicuous rebuke as he tested how boldly he could ignore Congress in pursuit of his highest-profile goal.

One of those senators voting 'yes' on the resolution was Missouri's Senator Roy Blunt. The Senate voted 59-41 to cancel Trump's February proclamation of a border emergency, which he invoked to spend $3.6 billion more for border barriers than Congress had approved. Twelve Republicans joined Democrats in defying Trump in a showdown many GOP senators had hoped to avoid because he commands die-hard loyalty from millions of conservative voters who could punish defecting lawmakers in next year's elections.

U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) released the following statement to KY3 News.

“I fully support President Trump’s commitment to secure the border and build physical barriers wherever they are needed. I have repeatedly said that securing the border has to be the first step in addressing our immigration issues. There are several existing authorities that could be used to support what President Trump wants to do at the border without creating a court case or declaring an emergency. I have encouraged him to use those authorities. This issue will be settled in the courts. That could take months and result in future Presidents having emergency authority to use in other ways. Democrats have already made clear that they believe they could use this same authority to impose policies like gun control or the Green New Deal. Those decisions should not be made without congressional action. I was aggressively opposed to the Obama administration’s attempts to circumvent Congress’s appropriating authority to prop up Obamacare. The same principle should apply regardless of which party occupies the White House.”