Trump Can Build the Wall Without Congress
RUSH: Hi. Welcome back, folks. Rush Limbaugh, the EIB Network, and we are right here with you on Christmas Eve, all three busy broadcast hours, one of them already in the can. And it’s a thrill to be here with you, a fun day. Telephone number if you want to join us, 800-282-2882. The email address, [email protected]
A couple of people who are not Washington insiders have written an op-ed in the USA Today today. It prints out to four pages, and their basic point is that Trump is only gonna get this wall built if he does it using executive power, that the Congress is never gonna agree to it particularly when the Democrats come back and take control of the House. It isn’t gonna happen. They’re never gonna come to an agreement. They’re never gonna give Trump what he wants.
The last thing in the world they’re gonna do is give Trump what he wants while they’re in the middle of trying to bust up Trump’s base — and that is probably true. Now, I think there would be a way to do it, but it would require shifting public blame for this in a majority sense or basis to the Democrats, who deserve it! They’re the ones unwilling to capitulate and agree to border security. It’s no more complicated than that. They’re unwilling to participate in anything involving border security.
Not just a wall. They’re unwilling to appropriate any money whatsoever for border security. So you heard Trump float the idea that he could get money from the defense budget or elsewhere in the federal budget that the executive branch controls and build it that way. And you’ve heard Chuck Schumer and other Democrats say, “He can’t do that! He can’t spend money we have not earmarked. He can’t spend money we have not appropriated.” It simply isn’t true.
There are all kinds of departments and bureaucracies and areas of the executive branch with unspent money, and Trump can go get whatever he needs from any of those different departments and allocate it, and he can get started building the wall, and he can do it constitutionally on the premise that he is engaging in an act of national security! He is the executive. He does not have some of the executive power; he has all of it!
It’s on that basis that if he really wanted to fire Mueller, he could! If he wanted to fire anybody at the Department of Justice, he could. He can fire anybody. He is the only source of power. It is not divided. There isn’t a committee. There’s not a board of directors. He is the executive, and, as such, he alone has the full power of the executive branch. And as long as he is executing those powers under the terms of the Constitution, there is nothing anybody can do to him! The price he pays for blunders in this area is at the ballot box.
The price any president pays is political.
If using his executive power angers many people in the country to vote against him and his party, that’s the price he pays for doing it! But it is not impeachable to act on behalf of national security according to the Constitution, which he is singularly allowed to do. And if he believes that open borders are resulting in the infiltration of the country of all kinds of undesirables — including terrorists and gangs and whatever — then he is perfectly within his rights to go get money already allocated to the executive branch and build the wall.
So you question: Why doesn’t he do it? Well, there are any number of answers to this. One of the answers is that not everybody on his team is for him. Not everybody on his team is for a wall. Not everybody on his team believes in his ideas. By “his team,” I mean in the administration, in the West Wing. As we all know, there are people there who — to one degree or another since Trump was inaugurated — have attempted to undermine via leaks and sabotage. It’s been one of the curious aspects to me, Trump’s staffing choices.
But, remember, to fill positions in Washington in an administration, executive branch, the odds are you’re gonna get some people from Washington. Everybody in that town is a devotee to one degree or another of the swamp. Trump has not brought in a bunch of full-fledged outsiders. He’s got some people that are careerist Washingtonians, career government types. And I’m sure that he has chosen people he thinks can help him navigate the waters — he being an outsider — on the belief that they are on his team.
But I have no doubt, for example, that there are people on his staff… You know, the Drive-Bys are trying to tell you that I changed his mind on signing this continuing resolution. The real truth is that there are people in his administration trying to get him to sign this thing with no deal for him. There are people on his team that are telling him (because it’s the way they think) that getting a deal with Congress is the best thing you can do.
You know it as well as I do that many measures of success, when it comes to president and Congress — individual senators and congressmen and members of the House — is, “How much legislation did they pass? How many bills have their names on them?” This is just the way the town works. It’s one of the many reasons Trump was elected to blow it up that it works this way. My only point is, in staffing an administration — and it’s massive, folks.
It’s so big, Trump doesn’t know them all. He can’t possibly know everybody. Now, in his immediate circle, yeah. But you should take a tour. You can’t, but you should take a tour through the West Wing. You would not believe. I don’t know what you think the West Wing is, which is where the Oval Office is and all the executive offices. They can’t put 5% of the people that work in the administration in the West Wing.
Across the street is the Old Executive Office Building, now called the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, and that’s not even big enough to house ’em all. I mean, they’re everywhere. And they’re all working through their superiors — and everybody has superiors — to try to influence the outcome of the administration. Some try to protect Trump from himself, they think. Some try to advocate and help him.
But they’re all people who believe that the route to success is this old crossing the aisle, shaking hands, showing Washington works, compromise, process. How many media people went bananas last week — we played the sound bites for you — when Trump announced that he was not gonna sign this thing, the CR, and that there was gonna be a shutdown? Remember A.B. Stoddard? She went ballistic on Fox News, on you Bret Baier’s show.
She was beside herself! She could barely speak because the president had rejected what? Process and compromise. Now, you and I both know that process and compromise in Washington equals Republicans caving and getting nothing and Democrats getting what they want. And that’s what it is, and that’s what A.B. Stoddard was upset about. (impression) “Trump should realize he’s got the losing position here. That would be immature thing to do.
“Trump should realize he’s got nowhere to go on this, that he lost the House. Trump should realize it! He should take what he should get, can get, and be thankful for it.” And when Trump didn’t do that — when he said, “Hell, no, not signing this thing. Government shutdown” — and then starts trying to lay blame on the Democrats, they go apoplectic on the basis that Trump has rejected the way Washington works: Compromise and process.
Well, there are people advising Trump to do just what people like A.B. Stoddard wanted him to do. “Take a deal, Mr. President! Take $1.6 billion, take $2 billion and get as much as you can.” But this is how we show people we are governing. This is how we show people that we’re cooperating. Well, that’s not what Trump was elected to do. Trump was elected precisely to overwhelm and overcome this process because we always end up on the short end of the stick on it.
We have been fed up for years and years working under these concepts of process and compromise where we always end up losing and our politicians that cave into it are then praised to the hilt as mature. “They’re growing in office!” But we always end up losing somehow — legislatively or otherwise — to the Democrats.
Well, Trump has totally eschewed process and compromise now. And his position is that until the Democrats are forthcoming with the amount of money he wants for border security, the government is gonna remain shut down. And so it is.
So now there are people who are thinking that this compromise is never gonna happen, meaning the Democrats are never, ever, particularly with control of the House only the January 3rd away, they’re never gonna cave. They don’t think Trump has any leverage and they think they have it all.
And they think if they can humiliate Trump that they might be able to cause some of you in Trump’s base to get frustrated, throw your hands up and give up and fade away and realize that you can’t beat the swamp and never, ever again vote for somebody like Trump who says that that’s what he’s going to do. That’s what they have at stake. And they’re so close to it in their minds that they can taste it.
Now, the Donald Trump of the campaign, what do you think he’d be doing right now? I tell you what I think he’d be doing. I think he would already have amassed a pile of money, unused, from other areas of the executive branch and the various budgets. And I think that he would have already started on the process of building the wall and that Congress would be going nuts like they are now, like they do anyway. The Democrats would be going absolutely bonkers, and the media would be going absolutely bonkers.
I saw that Dinesh D’Souza had a tweet where he thinks Trump ought to deliver a major address to the nation on the importance of immigration policy and trade policy, the importance of both those to national security and prosperity.
I like the idea of a national address. I don’t know the networks would give him the time, though, if he requested it. You know, they don’t have to. But a national address that’s written and promptered could explain what’s going on and why. Doing it during the break between Christmas and New Year’s might not get the largest audience.
We also had the acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, was on I think Fox News over the weekend, one of the Sunday shows, and he said that Trump is willing to accept less money to build the wall. He said the new offer is between Trump’s $5.7 billion request and the $1.3 billion the Democrats are offering. Mulvaney said he’s waiting to hear back from Schumer, but he hasn’t heard anything.
Dick Turban said that all we need is technology along the border like drones instead of some medieval wall. This is such caca. You will find walls around every important business or every important wealthy person’s estate, because they do work. This is absurd. This is just distracting.
This has now become — the Democrats, there are two things involved. Trump doesn’t get a win, and there isn’t gonna be anything done that would interrupt the flow of illegal immigrants to the United States because the Democrat Party wants them. The Democrat Party needs them and they’re not gonna agree to anything. So there isn’t gonna be an agreement here.
There’s going to be a showdown of power, executive branch power versus congressional power. And there are many people who think the president has the executive power to start building this wall with money that’s already been allocated in budgets that exist in the executive branch and he can and he does. There will be hell to pay.
I mean, if you think this is bad, the minute a wall’s construction has actually begun with money that Chuck Schumer and his gang don’t think they participated in allocating or appropriate, they go nuts and they start shouting and yelling “impeachment.” But the fact of the matter is — and the Washington swamp would be too. And I’m sure that there are people in the administration they do not want anything like that to happen, that they think the only way out of this is a negotiated settlement where nobody gets exactly what they want from both sides, just the usual way that these kinds of things end up being settled.
Does anybody remember, for example, how the 1995 budget deal was solved? Or any other government shutdown. Do any of you remember what happened to end them? I will wager you don’t. I will wager there’s not a one of you that remembers what happened to end any of those shutdowns. You’d have to go look it up. You’d have to Google it. You’d have to Wikipedia it. You’d have to do something to find out.
How did the shutdown 11 months ago, the Schumer shutdown over DACA, three day shutdown over DACA, how did that end? Do you remember? My point is nobody ever remembers these things anyway. They don’t remember how they end. This is time to take a stand on a premise that has existed since the Trump campaign. And it is border security. If you want to throw the wall in, go ahead and throw the wall in.
But I think it’s time to take a shot at breaking these people on this right now. I think it’s time to illustrate that the Democrats are acting like a bunch of spoiled brat little kids when it comes to an issue of national security and prosperity and the rule of law. Don’t forget here we’re talking about illegal immigration.
The message should continue to be it is the Democrats who do not want to fix this! It’s the Democrats who are saying “no”! It’s the Democrats who are the obstacle to border security or to reopening the government or whatever. It’s the Democrats who want no part of it. It’s the Democrats who are stopping things. It’s the Democrats who won’t cooperate. It’s the Democrats who won’t across the aisle. It’s the Democrats who won’t compromise.
All of this is true. All of this needs to be part of the messaging. It is the Democrats who are not interested in securing the southern border. It’s the Democrats who are acting like children. It’s the Democrats who are acting like spoiled brats. That is what needs to be illustrated and with every Republican signing on to this, that objective can be reached. It requires full-fledged support for the president and the premise which every Republican should sign on to.
I know people are quoting polling data, “42% of the American people don’t want a wall.” You’re gonna get polling data that backs up the Democrat during every controversial issue there is. You’re gonna get polling data that shows Republicans are in the minority on everything. Ignore it!
It’s the Democrats willing to damage the country rather than support the president. It’s the Democrats willing to put the country in great peril because they are refusing to shore up the border. It needs to be demonstrated. And to me this is a golden opportunity. Everything we want to do, everything we want to teach people about the Democrats and illustrate is right here on the table, and it’s already happening. We just need to be pointing it out each and every day
RUSH: So I checked the email during the break, and people are asking, “Rush, are you sure that Trump can go get unspent federal dollars somewhere and allocate it to whatever he wants? I don’t know. I’ve heard people saying that that’s not constitutional.” Let me ask you all a question: Where did Barack Hussein O get his $150 billion, much of it in cash, to drop on the tarmac at Tehran International Airport in the midst of the Iran deal negotiations?
Where did that $150 billion come from? Did Obama call his buddies at the Fed and say, “We need you to print me some money”? Did Obama go to various federal agencies? Did he go to the defense budget or did he go to a bunch of different places and get the money? Where did he get cash? Where do you get that much cash? I think it was $8 billion in cash. It may be $8 million, I forget. But it was a hell of a lot. Where did Obama get it? And you’ll notice that nobody in Congress raised a stink about it.
Nobody in Congress said, “Mr. President, you can’t do that. We didn’t authorize it. We didn’t appropriate it,” and even if somebody in Congress would have said that, Obama would have said (impression), “I can do it ’cause you can’t stop me and I know you won’t and I have the media on my side,” and it would have not changed. What did we do when Obama said that? Well, we shouted from the rooftops and we tried to tell everybody that this stunk and that Obama was lying to us about the deal. He gave $150 billion to the mullahs.
Now, it was also part of a prisoner release. So some were saying that part of that money was a ransom payment. The point is that Donald Trump can certainly go find federal money and start building the wall. I’m just telling you that he’s probably got a lot of people in his own administration — and I don’t doubt his lawyers are telling him not to do it, either. I think, in fact, if I may be so bold — and this may not be bold now. I think other people have probably pointed it out. But in the early days of the Mueller investigation, Trump’s Office of Legal Counsel…
The White House counsel. Not personal lawyers, but the White House Office of Legal Counsel, presidential lawyer, presidential adviser and so forth. I will bet you a dollar to a doughnut that almost all if not all, of those lawyers were telling Trump to not criticize Mueller, “Don’t be public. We’ll try to negotiate a deal. We’ll show we’re willing to compromise,” because they’re all Washington people. They’re all… Their clients come and go, and presidents come and go.
But people that live in that town are gonna be there long after presidents come and go, and so their loyalties really are to a system. Their loyalties really are to a set of circumstances that exist in the establishment inside the Beltway. So that even Trump’s lawyers that he hired that ostensibly are there to advise him on how to prevail in things probably were preaching compromise.
They probably were preaching the standard things that lawyers tell clients, “Don’t criticize the prosecutor! “Don’t make ’em any angrier at you than they already are,” which I thought would be irrelevant. They’re gonna be angry at Trump as long as he’s alive. But the point is, he didn’t have a whole bunch of Donald Trumps around him. He’s had people around him trying to rein him in. And I’m — don’t doubt that some of them have been acting on what they think are his best interests.
I mean, if you live and work in that town and if the coin of the realm in that town is compromise and process… Here. Just to repeat this, grab sound bite No. 23. This A.B. Stoddard. I referenced this earlier. You may not have heard this last week. It was last Thursday the Fox News Channel. This was after Trump vetoed the budget and began the shutdown. Listen to this meltdown…
STODDARD: The nation’s fourth graders know this is no way to run a lemonade stand. This is completely irresponsible. The markets are rattling on the prospect of a shutdown. The president time and again is contemptuous of process and of compromise. He doesn’t have 60 votes. He must compromise. He was all for a DACA deal. He refused to take it. He took four positions on the Goodlatte bill.
BAIER: I get it. I get it.
STODDARD: He refuses to do the hard work.
BAIER: If he listens to the Mark Meadows and the Jim Jordans and the other people on the House floor —
STODDARD: They don’t know what they’re talking about! This is political malpractice. They’re wrong!
RUSH: (impression) “They don’t know what the president… The — the — the congressional caucus there, the Freedom Caucus, they don’t know what they’re talking about! Anybody urging Trump to do anything than compromise doesn’t know what they’re talking about. He doesn’t have 60 votes. That means he’s got to compromise.” He doesn’t even… They don’t even need 60 votes for this! If Mitch McConnell really wanted to act like the guy running the Senate and wanted to make the rules, they don’t even need 60 votes for this!
You and I know this! But that’s not how the town thinks. The town thinks, “We got these rules, and they’re sacrosanct, and we dare not touch them.” But the Democrats always do. Sometimes it comes back to bite ’em, but the Democrats will do whatever they have to do whenever to win. We could fix this. Mitch McConnell could fix this so he doesn’t need 60 votes. Now, it’s not just as simple as me saying it. There’s a process, and it would require taking a lot of hits in the media.
It would require taking a lot of incoming fire that they’re not used to talking about, not to degree that they were on this. But you hear her. “Political malpractice. The markets are reacting to this. The president time and time again is contemptuous of process and compromise.” My point to you is that I think a large number of people called his advisers (who surround him) believe exactly that. And I think his first team of lawyers did via Mueller. Maybe even the current crop of lawyers believes that way.
“Process and compromise. It’s the coin of the realm. It’s the way it works here.” Well, that being the case, it’s one of the reasons why our side always ends up coming up short, which is why Trump was elected to kind of blow all of that up, which he is in the process of doing every which number of ways. And it is causing the predictable meltdown reaction. Nobody should shy away from it because of the reaction.
RUSH: I need to make a correction, folks. The Iranian deal was not $150 billion. It was $1.7 billion. It came out of something called the judgment fund. There’s some aspect of this Iran deal, my memory is, that’s 150-something. And I misspoke when I said $150 billion. It’s $1.7 billion was the entire deal that Obama arranged to pay Iran in the middle of the negotiations on the Iranian deal.
But then there were those pallets of cash that were delivered to the tarmac at Tehran international spaceport. And I’m gonna have to track down that 150. I know that there was a cash element here, and for some reason this figure of 150 is being bandied about inside my deep, dark crevices of my fertile cranium, little gray cells.
RUSH: This whole Iran deal now has got me bugabooed here because I’ve used some figures here that I thought I knew were right. But I’ve been having people say, “No, no, no. It was this and it was that.” Everybody’s trying to be helpful. So I did a little search here in the top of the hour. I found a Breitbart story. The date of this story is not specified but it was a fact-check story, and the headline: “Yes, the Nuclear Deal Hands $150 billion Over to Iran —
“During the opening statements on Sunday night’s presidential debate … Donald Trump described the Iran nuclear deal as a ‘one-sided transaction’ that would result in $150 billion returning to the coffers of … Iran.” So I’ve had that number going about my head, and I’ve used it. “No, Rush, it was $1.7 billion, and that was cash, and that was dropped on the tarmac. It came from the judgment fund, and it was part of a ransom payment for hostages and also part of the Iran deal.” Then another friend said, “No, the cash element, Rush, was $400 million.”
Well, that figure rang a bell, too! I said, “Okay, that makes sense.” So I finally said, “I need to go check this,” and the fact check says it’s mostly true on the premise that the nuclear deal hands $150 billion over to Iran, and much of that is from the unfreezing of Iranian assets that was part of the Iran deal. Lifting of sanctions and the unfreezing assets. I do remember that there’s something to that, ’cause I remember that there were so many American corporate entities that were in favor of it, in favor of the Iran deal.
I said, “Why in the world…? What possibly could explain this?” I said, “There has to be a reason,” and I looked and I found one explanation for it, and it was Boeing! Boeing was looking forward to Iranian sanctions being lifted because the Iranian national airline fleet was practically falling apart because of these sanctions. They hadn’t been able to import or pay for any modernized jets for airliner travel. The lifting of the sanctions would permit it! The Iranians were on the way to signing a contract with Boeing for $60 million, I think.
No, it’d be much more than that. I mean, that’s one plane. But it was a deal for Boeing to participate and compete against Airbus for purchases by Iran of modernized jet aircraft. The point is none of that could have happened unless Iran ended up being flush with money, and one of the ways it happened was the lifting of sanctions and the unfreezing of assets, and all of it totaled a $150 billion benefit — give or take a few billion. Now, the amount of money on the pallets was $1.7 billion.
It was cash. That’s a lot of cash. (chuckling) I don’t know where you go get that. There isn’t… I wonder how much cash there is in circulation the country at any one time. I mean, it is regulated, the amount of actual hard, cold cash that’s in circulation. It would shock you how little it is. Well, maybe it wouldn’t shock you, but it would shock you how little it is compared to the total gross national product, gross domestic product. The amount of cash in that is actually chump change because there’s so much credit and credit card usage.