The White House said today that President Trump will sign funding legislation set to be approved by Congress, but at the same time also will declare a national emergency under which he will seek to access additional funding for wall construction on the U.S.-Mexico border.

The President’s signature on the funding legislation will keep all Federal government agencies and operations running through Sept. 30, and end two months of funding disruption and anxiety which included shuttering several government agencies for 35 days.

The Senate approved the funding bill late this afternoon on an 83-16 vote.  The House had not voted on the bill as of late today, but was expected to approve it this evening.

“President Trump will sign the government funding bill, and as he has stated before, he will also take other executive action–including a national emergency–to ensure we stop the national security and humanitarian crisis at the border,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said today.

When asked whether Democrats would file a legal challenge against the President if he declares a national emergency, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Democrats would review their options. She also pushed back against the assertion that there was any national emergency at the border.

“It’s not an emergency—what’s happening at the border,” Speaker Pelosi said.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said that he hopes the President does not declare a national emergency, saying that “would be a very wrong thing to do.”

The agreed upon spending bill will include $1.37 billion for border fencing, but stops short of providing funding for border wall prototypes that the President has been promising.

“I’ve indicated to [Trump] that I’m going to support the national emergency declaration. So, for all my colleagues, the President will sign the bill. We will be voting on it shortly,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said on the Senate floor this afternoon.

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Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.