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. 

ADVERTISEMENT

"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 EsperOvernight Defense & National Security — Presented by Boeing — Major Russia weapons test stokes tensions Three key behind-the-scenes figures in Jan. 6 probe Trump Defense chief blocked idea to send 250,000 troops to border: report MORE called congressional leaders, including House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiFive reasons for Biden, GOP to be thankful this season Bipartisan success in the Senate signals room for more compromise The GOP's post-1/6 playbook is clear — and it's dangerous MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerSchumer mourns death of 'amazing' father Feehery: The honest contrarian Biden administration to release oil from strategic reserve: reports 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 TrumpStowaway found in landing gear of plane after flight from Guatemala to Miami Kushner looking to Middle East for investors in new firm: report GOP eyes booting Democrats from seats if House flips 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.