Washington, D.C. – House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-WA) released the following statement about President Trump’s announcement that he is considering an attempt to misuse a declaration of national emergency in order to divert military construction readiness funds and spend the money on his border wall:

“President Trump is considering a plan to misuse an emergency authority and divert substantial resources from our military to build a wall on the southern border. This is as clear a statement as any that President Trump values the construction of his wall over military readiness and support for our troops and their families. Diverting money from these military construction accounts could have substantial impacts for servicemembers at installations across the country and on defense projects that are important in supporting readiness, training, operations, and quality of life for military personnel and their families.

“Moreover, by abusing this authority, President Trump would be saying that he does not actually believe all the money he requests for our country’s defense is needed for legitimate national security purposes. That would raise major questions about his credibility when he requests his next defense budget from Congress.

“I am adamantly opposed to President Trump using an unwise, weak, and irresponsible legal gimmick to circumvent Congress and the American people’s opposition to using taxpayer money for the construction of an unnecessary wall.”