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Why this Florida Republican voted to terminate Trump’s national emergency

Rep. Francis Rooney of Naples was one of just 13 Republicans to side with Democrats on the president’s emergency order
U.S. Rep. Francis Rooney, R-Naples, appears on C-SPAN on July 11, 2018. On Tuesday, Rooney voted to terminate President Donald Trump's national emergency.
Published Feb. 27

Democrats flexed their new House majority on Tuesday to launch a blow to President Donald Trump attempt to bypass Congress and build a wall at the southern border.

On a 245-132 vote, the House of Representatives passed a resolution to terminate Trump’s declaration of a national emergency at the U.S.-Mexico border. The Senate must now take up the issue as well.

While the vote was largely along party lines, 13 Republicans defected and joined Democrats in questioning the legitimacy of Trump’s actions. One of them was U.S. Rep. Francis Rooney, a two-term lawmaker from Naples.

Here’s how Rooney explained his vote:

“I voted for the resolution because I believe in the rule of law and strict adherence to our Constitution. We are, as John Adams said, ‘A nation of laws, not men.’ The ends cannot justify the means; that is exactly what the socialists want.

“We need to secure our border and control who enters the United States but this emergency declaration is not the answer – fixing our broken immigration system is: adopting skill-based immigration, not family-based; policing visa overstays; ending the diversity lottery; making e-verify required of all employers; and stopping asylum abuse by requiring that asylum claims can only be made at a legal point of entry to the United States.”

RELATED: Marco Rubio votes against border-spending deal and questions Trump’s call for national emergency

Trump has said he will veto the resolution if it reaches his desk, setting up a possible showdown between the White House and Congress.

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