ACLU to ask court to block $3.6B reallocated from military projects to border wall

ACLU to ask court to block $3.6B reallocated from military projects to border wall

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on Tuesday said it would ask for a court order preventing the Trump administration from reallocating military funds to use for border wall construction. 

The ACLU's announcement came after the administration notified lawmakers Tuesday that it would move forward with redirecting the $3.6 billion from military construction projects for use at the border. 

“The fact that the government sat on these so-called ‘emergency funds’ for seven months further confirms that this is nothing but an unlawful power grab," said ACLU attorney Dror Ladin in a statement. 

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"We’ll be back in court very soon to block Trump’s latest effort to raid military funds for his xenophobic wall,” he added.

Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperDemocratic senator: Pulling out of nuclear deal 'isolated the United States rather than isolating Iran' Trump: 'I have no intention' of meeting with Iran at UN Pompeo doubles down on blaming Iran for oil attacks: 'This was a state-on-state act of war' MORE called congressional leaders, including House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiRomney: Trump asking Ukraine to investigate political rival 'would be troubling in the extreme' Pelosi: Whistleblower complaint 'must be addressed immediately' Democrats must embrace Israel and denounce anti-Semitism in the party MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerToomey on gun reform: 'Beto O'Rourke is not helping' Schumer, Pelosi push Trump to back universal background check bill Sinema says she would back Kennedy in race against Markey MORE (D-N.Y.), on Tuesday to inform them of the reallocation decision. 

Schumer slammed the move as a "slap in the face" to military members.  

Pentagon officials also said that Esper approved using $3.6 billion in Defense Department dollars to build 175 miles of wall on U.S.- Mexico border.

The ACLU first sued the Trump administration to prevent it from repurposing the money after President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump's top adviser on Asia to serve as deputy national security adviser United Auto Workers strike against GM poised to head into eighth day Trump doubles down on call to investigate Biden after whistleblower complaint: 'That's the real story' MORE's February emergency declaration. He declared the emergency in order to gain access to additional money for the wall after Congress passed a spending bill that only gave $1.35 billion for the border.

The Supreme Court ruled in July that the administration could start using $2.5 billion in military funding for the wall while litigation on the matter plays out.

An ACLU spokesperson told The Hill that the statute President Trump is invoking for using the $3.6 billion is different from the statute invoked for the $2.5 billion.