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 EsperOvernight Defense: Pentagon says Syrian oil revenue going to Kurdish forces | GOP chair accuses Dems of using Space Force as leverage in wall fight | Dems drop plans to seek Bolton testimony Pentagon: Revenue from Syria oil fields going to Kurdish-led forces The Hill's Morning Report - Dems poised to air alleged Trump abuses on TV MORE called congressional leaders, including House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDemocrats sharpen their message on impeachment Congress hunts for path out of spending stalemate Siren song of impeachment lures Democrats toward election doom MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerIlhan Omar blasts Pete King as an 'Islamophobe' after he announces retirement: 'Good riddance' Top Senate Dem: Officials timed immigration policy around 2020 election Senate fight derails bipartisan drug pricing bills 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 TrumpFive landmark moments of testimony to Congress Lindsey Graham basks in the impeachment spotlight Democrats sharpen their message on impeachment 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.