Late Wednesday, a federal appeals court overturned a lower court ruling, thus allowing the Trump administration to divert $3.6B in military construction funds to the Trump-promised southern border wall.
“The decision from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, based in New Orleans, lifts an injunction issued last month in Texas that blocked the reallocation plan,” USA Today reported early Thursday morning. “In the 2-1 ruling, judges granted the administration’s request to temporarily halt the nationwide injunction from U.S. District Judge David Briones of El Paso. Congress appropriated the $3.6 billion to the Department of Defense for 127 construction projects, Briones had ruled, so the Trump administration shouldn’t divert it to the border wall.”
President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Thursday morning to celebrate the legal victory.
“Breaking News: The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals just reversed a lower court decision & gave us the go ahead to build one of the largest sections of the desperately needed Southern Border Wall, Four Billion Dollars,” the president posted.
“Entire Wall is under construction or getting ready to start!” he added.
Breaking News: The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals just reversed a lower court decision & gave us the go ahead to build one of the largest sections of the desperately needed Southern Border Wall, Four Billion Dollars. Entire Wall is under construction or getting ready to start!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 9, 2020
Last year, President Trump declared a national emergency at the southern border, seeking to free up billions for border wall funding.
“President Trump declared a national emergency over border security in February 2019, ordering government agencies to search for a total of $6.7 billion they could divert from military and other projects toward construction of a wall that has formed a central plank of his presidency,” The Wall Street Journal explained. “That declaration allowed him to skirt Congress, which had only allotted $1.38 billion toward new border barriers.”
“We’re going to confront the national security crisis on our southern border, and we’re going to do it one way or another,” Trump said at the Rose Garden, standing before Border Patrol agents and “Angel Moms” (mothers whose children were killed by illegals).
“President Trump will sign the government funding bill, and as he has stated before, he will also take other executive action — including a national emergency — to ensure we stop the national security and humanitarian crisis at the border,” read a statement from then-White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders. “The President is once again delivering on his promise to build the wall, protect the border, and secure our great country.”
Thus far, the Trump administration has built nearly a hundred miles of border wall, Newsweek reported last week:
“In a border wall status report provided to Newsweek, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency said that as of December 27th, the Trump administration had overseen the construction of 98 miles of ‘new border wall system.'”
The construction thus far has been “in place of dilapidated and outdated designs,” according to the outlet.
“CBP has said that construction on brand new barriers is currently underway,” said Newsweek, noting that Trump would need to add over 30 miles of wall before the end of 2020 to keep his promise.
“When it comes to making our country safer, securing our border, enforcing our laws and helping stop illegal immigration, President Trump has kept his promises,” said Trump campaign team deputy press secretary Daniel Bucheli.