Indian billionaire investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala says he's very upbeat about his country's growth potential after the country underwent a massive banking crisis and the rollout...Asia Economyread more
There's more pain ahead for the U.S. and China amid their bilateral trade dispute, according to one expert.China Politicsread more
The U.S. government on Monday temporarily eased some trade restrictions imposed recently on China's Huawei, a move that sought to minimize disruption for the telecom company's...Technologyread more
You know there's an underlying problem when investment firms start to cut exposure to a particular asset class.Commentaryread more
Stocks in Asia were mostly higher on Tuesday as a temporary reprieve in U.S.-China trade tensions provided a breather.Asia Marketsread more
The issue of corporate debt has surfaced as companies continue to use the low rates the Fed has provided to lever up their balance sheets.The Fedread more
A record 257.4 million travelers are expected to opt for U.S. airlines for travel this summer, the 10th consecutive annual increase, a trade group forecast on Tuesday.Airlinesread more
Huya, a Chinese live streaming platform focused on gaming, is looking to expand into the U.S. in the next couple of years, CEO Rongjie Dong told CNBC. The U.S. is expected to...Technologyread more
Most U.S. hedge funds aren't expecting another big stock market sell-off as more firms curb bets on volatility, according to Nomura.Marketsread more
Mall owners are increasingly building out food halls with local chef-driven eateries, sushi bars and premium coffee shops.Retailread more
While Trump's lawyers had argued that the committee's subpoena did not have a legitimate legislative purpose — and was therefore invalid — Mehta took a broader view.Politicsread more
As the White House descends further into chaos, no one can discern President Donald Trump's next move until he makes it.
But Trump and administration aides have signaled that he views a presidential declaration of emergency as an exit ramp from the standoff with Congress that has shut down a large chunk of the government for 18 days now. It would, simultaneously, let him assent to reopening federal agencies and assert unilateral authority to order construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Bracing for Trump's decision, congressional aides in both parties say the potential scope of presidential action ranges from very big to very small.
A president's authority to declare a national emergency gives him the power to redirect taxpayer funds Congress has already approved. In conversations with lawmakers, the White House has pointed toward two different pots of Pentagon money. One, containing less than $1 billion, is for curtailing drug shipments. The other, containing $22 billion, is for military construction projects.
The military construction pot might even be enough to pay for whatever barrier Trump wants across the 2,000-mile border, whether constructed of concrete or steel or something else. If Trump goes big, he could announce his intention to do exactly that.
Yet the bigger he goes, the bigger the backlash he risks.
An emergency declaration related to border control would face immediate legal challenges, just as his attempt to ban travel into the United States from some majority-Muslim countries did. The more miles of wall Trump attempts to build under an emergency declaration, the more potential challengers — Congress, private landowners, affected local governments.
Moreover, a recent 17-page report to Congress shows that the pot of military construction money contains funds previously designated for projects across the country. That would ensure resistance from both red and blue states eager for those projects. And at a time when Trump speaks openly about the prospect of impeachment proceedings, the weak factual basis for a border emergency claim would invite House Democrats to assert an unconstitutional abuse of executive power.
But a little-noticed administration maneuver last fall points to a far more limited possibility.
It could be completed by only touching the small pot of anti-drug money. It wouldn't require diverting cash from military construction projects elsewhere. It would only affect 31 miles of the Mexican border on a federal explosives-testing site in Arizona.
Last fall, the Pentagon informed Congress that the Navy had committed $7.5 million to "advance planning and survey efforts" for new and improved border barriers on the Barry M. Goldwater Range. Calling the range "a known drug-smuggling corridor," Assistant Defense Secretary Kenneth Rapuano wrote that such barriers "will both protect BMGR from such illegal activity and address human life and safety concerns by deterring unlawful entry onto an active bombing range."
In an October letter to Democratic Rep. Adam Smith of Washington, who now chairs the House Armed Services Committee, Rapuano said no construction had occurred on the range. But he noted that the administration was "reviewing its authority and funding options."
Expressing strong opposition, Smith and his Democratic colleagues estimated that the 31 miles' worth of barrier along the range would cost $450 million. The anti-drug account that the Pentagon might try to tap contains $760 million, according to a Republican congressional aide.
Trump has the opportunity to clarify his intentions in a televised prime-time address on the issue Tuesday. If recent form holds, lawmakers will find out at the same time everyone else does.