Sen. Boozman for border bill, Cotton against; mum on Trump's national emergency pledge

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    Arkansas’ U.S. Senators split their votes Thursday (Feb. 14) on a compromise bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security and a portion of President Donald Trump’s controversial border wall. U.S. Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark., voted for the bill, with U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., against. Neither Senator commented on Trump’s promise to enact a national emergency to find additional wall funding.

    Democratic leaders said they are planning a legal challenge to Trump’s effort to direct more money to a border wall by declaring a national emergency.

    The U.S. Senate voted 83-16 on the resolution that sets aside $1.375 billion for a 55-mile border barrier, which was less than the $5.7 billion Trump wanted for more than 200 miles of wall on the southern border. In his recent State of the Union joint address, Trump called on funding for new security along the nation’s southern border. The divisive topic was at the center of a partial federal government shutdown for nearly 35 days at the end of 2018 and in the early days of 2019 following Trump’s late December rejection of what was then a compromise bill between GOP and Democratic leadership.

    The U.S. House voted 300 to 128 late Thursday night for the resolution. The four members of Arkansas’ House delegation were split on the resolution, with U.S. Reps. Rick Crawford, R-Jonesboro, and Bruce Westerman, R-Hot Springs, voting against it, and U.S. Reps. French Hill, R-Little Rock, and Steve Womack, R-Rogers, voted for.

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