Trump can begin moving military money to border wall, court says
President Donald Trump’s planned border wall with Mexico got another boost after a federal appeals court lifted an order that had blocked his use of $3.6 billion in military construction funds.
The 2-1 decision issued Wednesday night by the U.S. Court of Appeals in New Orleans allows Trump to begin diverting the funds from other military projects while the government appeals a December ruling by a federal court in Texas that use of the money for the wall would be illegal.
The U.S. Supreme Court in July issued a decision lifting a similar order in California.
“This is a victory for the rule of law,” the White House press secretary said of the appeals court decision. “We are committed to keeping our borders secure, and we will finish the wall.”
U.S. District Judge David Briones in El Paso ruled in December that Trump broke the law by declaring a national emergency to redirect military money to the wall project after Congress specifically refused to pay for it. The lawsuit was filed by El Paso County, Texas, and the Border Network for Human Rights.
The majority decision was joined by Judges Edith Jones, an appointee of President Ronald Reagan, and Andy Oldham, a Trump appointee. Judge Stephen Higginson, appointed to the court by President Barack Obama, dissented, saying the lawsuit should be expedited instead, given the importance of the issue.