3D Chess: How President Trump will use the Omnibus Spending Bill to build the Wall

Three days ago, on Friday, March 23, 2018, President Trump signed the so-called bipartisan “budget deal” into law.

The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018 (aka HR 1625) funds the federal government through September 30, 2018. It is a bloated piece of legislation full of pork, which seems to betray many of Trump’s campaign promises by:

  • Not funding the $25 billion for Trump’s US-Mexico border wall. Instead, the bill has only $1.6 billion to repair and upgrade existing fencing along the border.
  • Not penalizing sanctuary cities that refuse to enforce federal immigration laws.
  • Not prohibiting federal funding for the Planned Parenthood abortion mills.
  • Not eliminating federal funding for PBS (Corporation for Public Broadcasting).
  • Not eliminating federal funding for PBS (Corporation for Public Broadcasting).
  • Increasing the budget of the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities by $3 million.

The reaction among Trump’s base to his signing of the “budget deal” was  outrage and talk of revolt. (InfoWars)

But wait!

On the same day that he signed the “budget deal,” President Trump also sent a fascinating and somewhat cryptic letter to the leaders of the House and the Senate (WhiteHouse.gov):

Text of a Letter from the President to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President of the Senate

Issued on:

Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

In accordance with section 7058(d) of division K of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018 (H.R. 1625; the “Act”), I hereby designate as an emergency requirement all funding so designated by the Congress in the Act pursuant to section 251(b)(2)(A) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985, for the accounts referenced in section 7058(d).

The details of this action are set forth in the enclosed memorandum from the Director of the Office of Management and Budget.

Sincerely,

DONALD J. TRUMP

What does the letter mean?

To begin, the so-called “budget deal” — the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018 — is actually an omnibus spending bill, not a federal budget bill.

Note: The word “appropriations” means funding or spending. The word “omnibus” refers to a legislative bill comprised of two or more general subjects that is designed to compel the executive to approve provisions that he or she would otherwise reject but that he or she signs into law to prevent the defeat of the entire bill.

Congress is supposed to create a new budget for the federal government each other, having been designated by the U.S. Constitution as having “power of the purse”. But Congress has failed in exercising that power by not passing a federal budget bill for FY 2018. It is precisely because they have failed to pass an annual budget that led to Congress passing a series of appropriations bills, like the Consolidate Appropriations Act of 2018, as “stop gap” measures to fund the huge apparatus of the federal government, because federal agencies cannot spend money unless funds are authorized and appropriated.

What is President Trump’s constitutional role in all this?

According to the National Priorities Project, “The Constitution does not, however, specify . . . a role for the president in managing the nation’s finances“.

Is President Trump constitutionally obliged to obey Congress’ Omnibus Spending Bill?

Yes and no.

Appropriations bills, like the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018, specify how much money will go to different government agencies and programs. There are two types of spending:

  1. Mandatory spending that the federal government must by law pay out, such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Being mandatory, this spending is authorized by Congress; it is not subject to appropriations.
  2. Discretionary spending is the part of the U.S. federal budget that Congress appropriates each year to fund spending that are not Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid, which means all the other federal agencies, such as DOD, DHS, Education, Energy, HUD, NASA, and the State Department.

Both Congress and the President must abide by the mandatory spending. It is the discretionary spending part of the Omnibus Spending Bill that President Trump’s enigmatic letter of March 23 addresses.

His letter says:

In accordance with section 7058(d) of division K of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018 (H.R. 1625; the “Act”), I hereby designate as an emergency requirement all funding so designated by the Congress in the Act pursuant to section 251(b)(2)(A) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985, for the accounts referenced in section 7058(d).

(1) Section 7058(d) of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018 refers to “Repurposed Funds“.

(2) The Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985, aka the Gramm-Rudman Act, was the first binding spending constraints on the federal budget, signed into law by President Ronald Reagan. The Act aimed to cut the federal budget deficit (which at the time, in dollar terms, was the largest in history) by providing for for automatic spending cuts (“sequestration”) to all departments and programs by an equal percentage, if the discretionary spending in Congress’ appropriation bills exceeds that year’s budget totals.

Alas, Gramm–Rudman failed to prevent large budget deficits. Balanced budgets did not actually emerge until the late 1990s when budget surpluses (not accounting for liabilities to the Social Security Trust Fund) emerged. However, the budgets quickly fell out of balance after 2000 and have run consistent and substantial deficits since then.

(3) Section 251(b)(2)(A) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985 says:

(b) ADJUSTMENTS TO DISCRETIONARY SPENDING LIMITS.—

(2) SEQUESTRATION [automatic spending cuts] REPORTS.—When OMB submits a sequestration report under section 254(e), (f), or (g) for a fiscal year, OMB shall calculate, and the sequestration report and subsequent budgets submitted by the President under section 1105(a) of title 31, United States Code, shall include adjustments to discretionary spending limits (and those limits as adjusted) for the fiscal year and each succeeding year, as follows:

(A) EMERGENCY APPROPRIATIONS; OVERSEAS CONTINGENCY OPERATIONS/GLOBAL WAR ON TERRORISM.

In other words, in his March 23, 2018 letter to the respective leaders of the House and the Senate, President Trump is saying he intends to “repurpose” certain funds that Congress had appropriated as “discretionary spending,” towards “emergency appropriations, overseas contingency operations/global war on terrorism”.

What might those “emergency appropriations” and “global war on terrorism” be?

In his speech to the nation on March 23, announcing that he has signed the Omnibus Spending Bill, President Trump called the funding of the border wall and illegal migrants — and by extension, sanctuary cities and states — a matter of “national security“. His March 23 letter to Congress suggests he intends to “repurpose” or use the discretionary funds appropriated in the Omnibus Spending Bill to construct the border wall and combat illegal immigration, including sanctuary cities.

There is precedent of a president “repurposing” discretionary funds for some other purpose. He is none other than Barack Obama.

From a FoxNews report on July 21, 2009:

President Obama has irked close allies in Congress by declaring he has the right to ignore legislation on constitutional grounds after having criticized George W. Bush for doing the same.

Four senior House Democrats on Tuesday said they were “surprised” and “chagrined” by Obama’s declaration in June that he doesn’t have to comply with provisions in a war spending bill that puts conditions on aid provided to the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.

In a signing statement accompanying the $106 billion bill, Obama said he wouldn’t allow the legislation to interfere with his authority as president to conduct foreign policy and negotiate with other governments.

Earlier in his six-month-old administration, Obama issued a similar statement regarding provisions in a $410 billion omnibus spending bill….

“During the previous administration, all of us were critical of (Bush’s) assertion that he could pick and choose which aspects of congressional statutes he was required to enforce,” the Democrats wrote in their letter to Obama. “We were therefore chagrined to see you appear to express a similar attitude.”

[…] Obama issued his first signing statement after receiving a $410 billion omnibus spending bill. He said the bill would “unduly interfere” with his authority by directing him how to proceed, or not to, in negotiations and discussions with international organizations and foreign governments.

Lastly, there is also another way that President Trump can thwart the omnibus spending bill — by not spending some of the discretionary funds appropriated by Congress, in the interest of slashing the bloated budget.

Indeed, Politico had reported in August 2017:

Lawmakers and activists are preparing for the possibility that President Donald Trump’s administration, in its zeal to slash the federal budget, will take the rare step of deliberately not spending all the money Congress gives it — a move sure to trigger legal and political battles.

The concern is mainly focused on the State Department, where Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has drawn criticism for failing to spend $80 million allocated by Congress to fight Russian and terrorist propaganda . . . . Activists and congressional officials fear such practices could take hold at other U.S. departments and agencies under Trump.

So cheer up, my fellow Deplorables. Things are not as bleak as they appeared to be last Friday. For although he signed the monstrous omnibus spending bill, President Trump has every intention to use the bill to fulfill some of his campaign promises.

When he indeed “repurposes” the discretionary funds in the omnibus spending bill toward building the Wall, the proverbial sh*t will really hit the fan, and the Left’s heads will explode.

When that happens, President Donald John Trump will need our support even more.

Please keep him in your prayers.

H/t John Molloy, Kelleigh Nelson, MomOfIV, MAC, and Reddit.

Update (March 27, 2018):

And here’s the proof:

Trump wall tweet March 25, 2018Trump wall tweet March 25, 2018 (2)

“Build WALL through M” = “Build wall through the military”.

President Trump will use the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to build the Wall.

~Eowyn

44 responses to “3D Chess: How President Trump will use the Omnibus Spending Bill to build the Wall

  1. it’s irrelevant now. I saw @ Steve Quayle’s website that DJT was dumb enough to go along with 19 nations, and kick out Russians – apparently 12 are kicked out of UN also. If I were Putin, I’d tell them to shove the UN where the sun don’t shine and quit it. Putin has shown great restraint til now but I think the last straw was breached. He’s deciding on retaliations and basically also said that seeing as the West wants this war so bad, it’s one of his options and he’ll obliterate them. (source whatdoesitmean.com and Steve Quayle site). On top of this fiasco, Trump signed the omnibus bill and it contains CLOUD act legislation, to greatly increase and remove limits to Orwellian state (Facebook and other social media giants will play a big role too).

    Like

  2. I guess the globalist banksters are gonna get the war with Russia they’re itching for and the fact Killary isn’t prez doesn’t matter – the current one is dancing to their tune

    Like

    • I will, uncharacteristically, go out on a limb and make this prediction:

      There will be no war against Russia. There will be noises and saber rattling, but there will be no firing of missiles, supersonic or otherwise, or nukes. Neither Trump nor Putin are stupid.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. I never saw Trump signing that without getting something massive in return.

    .mil will definitely benefit. May have the Corps of Engineers running the project or better still, let the SeaBees do it.

    BTW, the “Stormy Daniels” nothingburger on TV has been followed up with her touring everywhere Trump support was strong:

    http://triblive.com/local/allegheny/13465205-74/porn-star-stormy-daniels-to-perform-at-blush-gentlemens-club-in-pittsburgh

    Coincidence? Not a chance. This was dredged up to undermine what the left perceives is Trump’s support. ALL media, national and local is singing the same tune.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great stuff, even more that we needed, thanks Dr. E….People please be careful of sensationalists like those mentioned above, Dr. Eowyn has facts and links. Please do not follow folks like sensationalist Steve Quayle, he not only exaggerates, but you have to dig around to find anything that he says that is true. Also, war with Russia is not what our Prez wants…please relax, read what Dr. E has posted and don’t do research with phonies, only with solid folks.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. You have NO IDEA how much my spirits have lifted since reading this article. This is such wonderful news. You must admit “The Donald” stays in there fighting, even when we think there is no hope. Frankly, if it was good enough for Obummer to “repurpose” allocated funds . . . then it is quite splendid for our current POTUS to do the same

    I was quite sick to my stomach to see where Obummer has been over in Japan, etc. acting like he is still the leader of the free world!

    I certainly agree, it behooves us all to constantly bring our petitions before the Heaven’s regarding the welfare of President Trump, his cabinet, and his family. I for one am very glad that he has additional “guards” other than the Secret Service who are paid for with his own money. I fear for his life. No matter what sins he may have committed previously, if we believe in the remission of our sins, and forgiveness, which was brought about by the Atonement of Christ, which we will celebrate shortly . . . I whole heartedly think that Trump is a gift from Heaven.

    God Bless the USA, and God Bless President Donald J Trump!

    Liked by 3 people

  6. That budget bill. What an insult.
    I wasn’t ‘outraged’ at Trump, I was outraged at all the DC scum who triangulated the vote.
    Trump as well as “We The People” got screwed by DC.
    I’m with Trump

    Liked by 1 person

  7. It’s even better than that. You might want to check out this Thomas Wictor thread on a little known addition to a bill last year that allows Trump to divert pentagon appropriations to building the wall:
    https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/977795983336620033.html

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I’m hopeful, yet all we may get is a Potemkin wall, if anything, while Ryan and the Republicans have again doubled the statutory number of H-2B seasonal visas for wage-busting foreigners to take jobs from Americans. According to Breitbart the H-2B crony/graft program gives crony insiders enough of an edge to make a killing while ruining their competitors. This seasonal H-2B program, however, is nothing compared with white collar guest worker H-1, L-1, etc visas that take jobs from over ONE MILLION qualified Americans in science, computers, and engineering. This would seem to be a greater security threat than Mexican landscapers and restaurant workers.

    Liked by 3 people

    • You want to know what else those HI LI visa that besides jobs? They take houses and water. We are some 85 thousand houses short here is Calif. So even when renting a house, 30 people may show up to try to rent the house, and the land lords can really take advantage of this. Then we have Brown and every other left winger whining about the lack of water resources and drought here, and yet they bring half the planet to work these visas or get welfare. They all USE water and use housing governor!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

    • While sitting on a $500B budget bill he can’t get a wall? We spend five times that amount on taking care of the creeps. . I’m sorry, I’m not impressed. Sessions could have gotten that wall with that much leverage. If he wanted it, he’d have it.

      All he had to do was say “I’m not signing it”. “Give me the wall, take out the PP money and I’ll think about it”. He’ll NEVER be in another position like that. Somebody just got snookered and I don’t think it was Trump.

      Like

  9. I trust President Trump.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. Once again, it seems, the POTUS is waaaay ahead of ’em. ES&D, MFRS! MAGA!

    Liked by 3 people

  11. LOL – Trump is playing three dimensional chess.

    Everybody else is playing tic-tac-toe.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. I said last week, he can spend the money the way he wants. I know the left is chuckling thinking they pinned him against the wall when they were played big time. They have made it their pet project to block and damage him in every way possible. By stalling his appointments will not work in their favor. If they can’t damage him with this bill they will damage him personally.
    Thus the Stormy debacle. To heck with the fact they are destroying the family of a little boy that idolizes his daddy. A pox on them all.
    Build the wall.

    Liked by 4 people

  13. I also think it’s very interesting that that “Q” fellow commented about “Red Castle Green Castle” about an hour before President Trump held the news conference on Friday, concerning the bill. The word is that Red Castle is the logo used by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and one of their largest offices is in Greencastle, Indiana. They can build the wall and it will be covered under the military budget. A nice big wall!😳

    https://mobile.twitter.com/venus58/status/977357804494258176/photo/2

    Liked by 3 people

  14. Wanna bet by this time next year none of your predictions come true?

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I think that “3D Chess” is more likely “Three Card Monty”. We’ll see.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Yes!
    And, Trump can more effectively stop abortions as he is able to place Christian conservative judges on the Supreme Court.

    Liked by 3 people

  17. We’ve always been able to keep illegals out. Current laws needed to be enforced. But the PTB haven’t wanted it. The wall isn’t needed to keep out illegals. This whole wall thing gives me the creeps. Berlin had a wall too, to make it look as though a cold war was ‘on’. But both sides were funded by the same fabulously wealthy concerns and families. Antony Sutton wrote about it.
    And then, after 70 years, the Berlin wall just magically fell away because of a powerful slogan, something called “Glasnost”. Well, Gorbachev was a globalist as was his sidekick Maurice Strong. Those in power didn’t suddenly decide they’d been wrong. It’s simply that they knew the West had, by 1989, been demoralized into socialism/communism without a shot having been fired. As the KGB agent Yuri Besmenov stated, everything is done on a time line. I think our time is coming and we’re being ‘had’ with this wall idea.

    Like

    • Well, right now its a sieve. Unless they’re willing to actually shoot people for crossing a wall is the only other way. Did you know that there is a wall across Southern Mexico? There is. It is absolutely solid and very high. The Mexicans don’t mess around with illegal immigration.

      While it sounds like a lot of money it is a pittance compared to the costs of having illegals here. The care and treatment, not to mention the exposure to infectious disease are impossible to calculate.

      They need to pressure Mexico to help with this as well. Right now they are basically helping them escape. If I were king I would cut off trade an ban American business from manufacturing there until I got the concessions I wanted. I would also tell them that I planned to start shooting if their people crossed illegally.

      Right now its a game. They sit and watch and they know that the worst that can happen is that they’ll be sent back. Ask yourself, what would you expect in a war? Would you leave your borders open? Would you shoot to protect them?

      If Mexico didn’t have the U.S. as a “safety valve” they would be under a lot more pressure from their population to reform. They are responsible for caring for their population, not us.

      Liked by 2 people

    • By the way, I agree with most of what you’ve said. They don’t work for us, remember that. If they wanted to keep them out we could turn that around in one day using machine guns. A day or so of that and you wouldn’t see a would-be crosser for many miles.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. omnipresentelanvitalhuman

    Thank you for that. Saves me time. Now All I have to do is click the share link rather than explain it myself. Not to say that I was aware of everything you provided. It’s nice to get the answers to questions that I have been thinking about but have not asked. Great Stuff

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I signed a contract in Nov. 16. It was for four years. I plan to stick with it. And, if he does a good job, I’ll sign a four year extension.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. what about the nested Orwellian state collaboration in the bill? http://www.whatdoesitmean.com/index2518.htm

    Liked by 1 person

  21. First he’ll decide re UK, then vs rest of idiot leaders including Trump who expelled diplomats with no proof any wrong committed – UK expected (and duped) everyone to just accept their word for it with no independent investigation by the appropriate international bodies and no smoking gun https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/691600/vladimir-putin-russia-expelled-diplomats-us-britain-donald-trump-spies-sergei-skripal-UK

    Like

  22. UPDATE:

    Tweets from Trump prove this post to be correct. He is using the Omnibus Spending Bill to build the wall, using the US Army Corps of Engineers:

    “Build WALL through M” = “Build wall through military”

    Liked by 2 people

  23. I love it Dr. E! Bless you for carrying this even further and explaining to your folks. Oh yeah, he outsmarted them again! God bless and protect our President, and please Lord, remove the rotten establishment globalists from Congress! In Jesus’ Holy precious Name, we pray! Amen and Amen

    ROMANS 16:17-20
    17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. 18 For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple. 19 For your obedience is come abroad unto all men. I am glad therefore on your behalf: but yet I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil. 20 And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Reblogged this on Exposing Modern Mugwumps and commented:

    Our PRESIDENT outsmarted them again!

    Liked by 1 person

  25. I am very worried about President Trump at this point: I don’t like the fact that he said he would veto this Omnibus Bill and then signed it, but I can understand it, for this reason: I believe Ryan and McConnell were trying to ambush the President: Had he vetoed the bill, the markets could have tanked, sinking us all.
    This being said, I read that this Omnibus Bill would only fund construction for about 33 miles of wall. Yes, it is important to get it started, but it is more important to get it completed COMPLETELY, all 1,954 miles of it. Given the nature of government bureaucracy, I am not holding my breath.

    I will pray for President Trump’s and his family’s continued safety and longevity: The survival of America depends upon it. It’s a fight to the death at this point: The Left IS NEVER going to give up its fight to take America down!

    In addition to building the wall, President Trump MUST go after George Soros & Co. I do not know what he is waiting for. Has Trump been in on the con? Is he a willing partner to lasso the United States into line, and Soros knows he is safe? We may not know that at this point, but we must know. The fact that Soros walks freely and continues his pernicious evil is a mystery all insoluble to me; Certainly, a Soros in Gitmo would be a tremendous and bold move.
    Why the Wait???

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Pingback: 3D Chess: How President Trump will use the Omnibus Spending Bill to build the Wall | The Olive Branch Report

  27. “Heads explode…”
    So you are saying that DJT is like Slim Whitman’s music to Liberals?

    Liked by 1 person

  28. In writing that letter, he’s doing what’s in the appropriations act in the very section you are referencing:
    (4) The amounts repurposed under this subsection are designated by
    the Congress as an emergency requirement pursuant to section
    251(b)(2)(A)(i) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control
    Act of 1985 and shall be available only if the President subsequently
    so designates all such amounts and transmits such designations to the
    Congress.

    So he’s notifying congress he’s spending the money it appears to me. Sadly

    Like

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