The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday awarded President Donald Trump a victory by allowing his administration to redirect $2.5 billion previously approved by Congress for the Pentagon to help build the wall along the U.S/Mexico border instead, even though Democratic lawmakers refused to previously approve the necessary funding.
In a court ruling, a conservative-majority court voted 5-4 to block the verdict by a federal judge in California that prohibited President Trump from spending the allocated money since Congress did not authorize the funds to be specifically spent on building the border wall, which is strongly opposed by Democrats as well as the government of Mexico.
The administration indicated that they needed a swift court decision, as the money needed to be allocated and spent before the end of September due to the federal government’s end of fiscal year, and it was delivered. There was a brief explanation of the court’s decision indicating that the government “made a sufficient showing” and that the group that challenged the decision did not have legal merit to move forward with a lawsuit against the administration.
“Wow! Big VICTORY on the Wall. The United States Supreme Court overturned lower court injunction, allows Southern Border Wall to proceed. Big WIN for Border Security and the Rule of Law!” President Trump tweeted when the court announced the decision.
“Today’s decision to permit the diversion of military funds for border wall construction will wall off and destroy communities, public lands, and waters in California, New Mexico, and Arizona,” said Attorney Gloria Smith of the Sierra Club, an environmental organization that brought the lawsuit in an attempt to block the funds from being used for a wall.
In addition, the Southern Border Communities Coalition, a group created to advocate for those living in border areas, joined the Sierra Club’s attempt to block Trump’s actions to obtain the money for the wall.
In February, President Trump declared a national emergency in an effort to have the building of the wall funded without congressional approval, an unprecedented move on the part of the president. Democrats argued that Trump exceeded his presidential powers under the U.S. Constitution, and infringed upon the authority of Congress.
Due to the fact that Congress failed to approve $5.7 billion in funding for the wall the President asked for, he initiated a 35-day partial shutdown of the federal government that came to an end in January.
Now, the Trump Administration has indicated that it plans to redirect the $6.7 billion from the Department of Defense and Department of Treasury towards the construction of the border wall under the emergency declaration after Congress failed to provide the necessary money when asked. This includes $2.5 billion in Pentagon funding.