It’s been two years, and we’re still waiting for Louisiana’s congressional Republicans to show a little independence, to act as if they work for a co-equal branch of government that’s actually supposed to provide checks and balances on the presidency.
Will a threat to hard-won flood prevention infrastructure finally get them there?
The latest word out of the federal shut-down mess is that President Donald Trump may declare a national emergency and unilaterally divert money slated for other projects to build the border wall that he somehow couldn’t through Congress back when his obsequious allies still controlled both houses.
And one possible target is an Army Corps of Engineers’ post-disaster construction fund, created just last year to deal with the after-effects of hurricanes in Texas and Puerto Rico and devastating floods in Louisiana.
At risk are some of the Louisiana delegation’s top legislative priorities of recent years, including the Comite River Diversion Canal and the West Shore Lake Pontchartrain Hurricane Protection Project.
If this comes to pass — and it’s a huge if — Trump would be blatantly bypassing Congress’s intent.
Will Louisiana’s GOP members, who’ve been loyal to a fault to the president, just stand by and rationalize the move, just as they’ve basically supported his refusal to sign a bill keeping the government open without wall funding? In a less upside-down world, that wouldn’t even be a question.
But it is. And that’s an awfully sad symptom of the state of play right now.