Trump’s battle with Congress reopens as Republicans try to refocus attention on border wall

Midterm election finale shifts focus to Trump’s 2024 announcement

Tuesday

WASHINGTON — Amid a deepening crisis over impeachment, President Trump’s campaign trail and Twitter feed entered a new phase of his fight with Congress on Tuesday as Republicans sought to refocus attention on his proposed expansion of the U.S.-Mexico border wall and Democrats tried to draw a contrast with Trump’s unpopularity and divided party.

WASHINGTON — Amid a deepening crisis over impeachment, President Trump’s campaign trail and Twitter feed entered a new phase of his fight with Congress on Tuesday as Republicans sought to refocus attention on his proposed expansion of the U.S.-Mexico border wall and Democrats tried to draw a contrast with Trump’s unpopularity and divided party.

The battle to succeed House Speaker Paul D. Ryan took a new and potentially even more perilous turn as Republican leaders decided it would be a mistake to try to move forward with a resolution to allow President Trump to declare a national emergency to secure funding for a wall along America’s southern border without a clear path to passage.

The battle over the timing of Trump’s planned declaration of a national emergency is seen by many in Washington as the deciding factor in whether or not Congress will impeach the president. The move would further complicate and escalate the already heated debate over a U.S. government shutdown in two weeks and also add to the pressure on Trump to move quickly to approve the project’s construction through the emergency declaration process.

The House’s leadership is already divided on the issue, with Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Speaker Paul D. Ryan arguing Thursday for a quick resolution to the controversy, while Majority Whip Steve Scalise said that “there is no scenario where we would vote…and pass this bill today.”

On Friday, Ryan announced that he would hold a news conference on the issue “shortly.” But the decision to hold that news conference — which could have had potentially disastrous consequences for the GOP in 2020 — was delayed, first to Saturday, then Wednesday morning. By Monday, Ryan had announced that he would hold a news conference on the issue on “short notice” on Tuesday.

Ryan’s decision to hold a news conference without a vote to authorize the declaration was a shift from his previous statements that he would withhold a vote until the House could get to a committee to review special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Ryan’s decision to hold a news conference without a vote to

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