Trump 'greatly appreciates' Pelosi's opposition to impeachment

WASHINGTON DC- MARCH 14 Sen. Lisa Murkowski walks through the U.S. Capitol prior to the Senate voting to overturn the President's national emergency border declaration at the U.S. Capitol

Trump's move comes just one day after Vice President Mike Pence indicated to Republican senators in a closed-door meeting that Trump was open to Lee's legislation as a way to avoid an embarrassing public rebuke that would expose rifts within the GOP.

Barring a last-minute deal on some other face-saving measure, up to a dozen Republicans could join all Senate Democrats in voting to send the disapproval resolution to Trump's desk, setting up the first veto of his presidency. The Senate is also poised to vote on Wednesday on ending US support for the Saudi Arabian-led coalition fighting in Yemen ― legislation that the White House has threatened to veto. Trump declared an emergency last month to divert $3.6 billion from military construction projects to build border barriers after Congress voted to provide him with less than $1.4 billion for barrier construction. Congress has never before voted to overturn a president's emergency declaration.

By late Tuesday, there were indications that GOP opposition to Trump's emergency along the Mexican border was softening.

Trump has issued pleas on Twitter for Senate Republicans to support him with the vote.

The hope is that Trump would endorse that plan, and then more GOP senators would oppose a separate resolution blocking Trump's current emergency declaration.

Murkowski said in an interview that she would consider backing legislation "that actually does constrain" the president's emergency powers, but added, "At this point in time, we don't have it".

So far, four Republican senators have said they'll vote with Democrats to oppose Trump's emergency order.

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"They'd like to win and short of that they don't want a jailbreak" with large numbers of Republicans defecting, Sen. Congress can vote to block an emergency declaration, but the two-thirds majorities required to overcome presidential vetoes make it hard for lawmakers to prevail.

"We're going to have a news conference at the border over the next three weeks", Trump told reporters at a briefing at the White House on drug trafficking.

Republicans have also voiced concerns about the precedent that could be set for future Democratic presidents to declare national emergencies on any number of issues.

A Senate vote is expected Thursday on a measure to reject Trump's emergency declaration, which he's using to get access to billions of dollars for building border barriers. Mike Lee (R-Utah) introduced legislation Tuesday that would end national emergencies after 30 days unless Congress votes in favor of it.

The senator cautioned that Trump's position may still change - "It is only Wednesday, and it is the Trump administration".

Portman spokeswoman Emily Benavides said her boss backs the bill because he "supports narrowing the scope of the National Emergencies Act so that Congress will have more control over these decisions in the future".

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