Mnuchin urges Congress to give Trump unconstitutional line-item veto


Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin called on Congress Sunday to give President Trump a line-item veto despite the Supreme Court ruling 20 years ago that the practice was unconstitutional.

Mnuchin, during an appearance on “Fox News Sunday,” argued that the veto tool would give Trump negotiating power over Democrats in case they want more non-defense spending in the next budget.

“I think they should give the president a line-item veto,” said Mnuchin, reiterating comments Trump made last Friday when he signed the omnibus spending bill.

“That was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court,” anchor Chris Wallace reminded Mnuchin.

“Well again, Congress could pass a rule, okay, that allows them to do it,” Mnuchin, a former Goldman Sachs executive, answered.

“No, no,” Wallace said. “It would have to be a constitutional amendment.”

“Chris, we don’t need to get into a debate,” the secretary said. “There’s different ways of doing this.”

Mnuchin plowed on, claiming the president was hamstrung in his budget negotiations with Democrats.

“My comment is, it’s clear what happened. The Democrats, in order to get us military spending, demanded a massive increase in non-military spending. And the president made the decision this time that that was worth it because military spending, given what’s going on in Iran, in North Korea, in Venezuela, in Russia — all around the world where we’re using sanctions. We need to make sure we have a military that has the necessary resources.”

The Supreme Court in 1998 struck down the line-item veto, ruling there is “no provision in the Constitution that authorizes the president to enact, to amend or to repeal statutes​.​”


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