What is a national emergency? Here are 8 things to know

By Dareh Gregorian
President Donald Trump on Friday declared a “national emergency” to pay for his wall on the southern border.

  1. WHAT IS IT?
    Presidents have long had broad discretion to declare national emergencies and can tap into an array of emergency powers when they do.

While those emergency powers aren’t spelled out in the Constitution, legal scholars say the president is entitled to them under the broadly defined “executive power.” Abraham Lincoln used the power to suspend habeas corpus during the Civil War, while Franklin Roosevelt used it to order the internment of more than 100,000 Japanese-Americans during World War II.


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