Things That Matter

The Supreme Court Just Let Trump’s Border Wall Move Forward Using Billions In Military Funds To Pay For It

Donald Trump will stop at nothing to close our borders and build his beloved border wall and now he’s seemingly closer to reaching that goal. Despite constant opposition by immigrant rights advocates and politicians, Trump just received funding for his administration to move forward with the construction of a border wall. 

On Friday, the Supreme Court gave Trump a victory in his fight for the construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border allowing his administration to use $2.5 billion for it.

According to the New York Times, the $2.5 billion in funding will come from the Pentagon. “In a 5-to-4 ruling, the court overturned an appellate decision and said that the administration could tap the money while litigation over the matter proceeds,” reports the NYT. “But that will most likely take many months or longer, allowing Mr. Trump to move ahead before the case returns to the Supreme Court after further proceedings in the appeals court.” 

When news broke, Trump, of course, took to Twitter to gloat about his latest “victory.” 

Trump also followed up his initial tweet by saying: “Democrats don’t care about Border Security. They refuse to give the votes necessary to fix the Loopholes and Asylum. Would be so easy! They want Open Borders, which means CRIME, CRIME, CRIME!” 

The ruling on Trump’s border wall construction–using military funds–happened on the same day that he signed an agreement with Guatemala to limit asylum seekers. According to NPR, Guatemala agreed to sign a so-called “safe third country asylum agreement.” The agreement states that migrants traveling through Guatemala from countries including Honduras and El Salvador would need to claim asylum in Guatemala first instead of the United States. The “safe third country asylum agreement” was met with a lot of backlash on social media by immigration advocates.

NPR also reports that the $2.5 billion in funds for Trump’s border wall had initially been frozen by another lower court. Then the Trump administration asked the Supreme Court to review the freeze leading the high court to grant funding. 

The majority of the justices representing the court, however, are more on the conservative side. Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, and Stephen Breyer dissented. They “would have kept in place an injunction blocking construction while the litigation went forward,” reports BuzzFeed News

The $2.5 billion in funding for a border wall marks a major win for Trump since this was one of his campaign promises.

After all, during his 2016 presidential campaign, he constantly expressed that he would have Mexico for pay for the wall. Former Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto came forward when Trump began making those claims to say that Mexico, of course, would not pay for a border wall. Another former Mexican President, Vicente Fox, also had some strong words about Trump’s claims that Mexico would be funding construction for the wall. “I said, I’m not paying for that f*cking wall,” Fox said in a Comedy Central interview. 

Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, and Clarence Thomas ruled in favor of lifting U.S. District Court Judge Hawywood S. Gilliam, Jr. of Oakland’s injunction. Gilliam had blocked funds initially approved for military personnel and training to be allocated toward the construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. 

According to BuzzFeed News, Justice Stephen Breyer didn’t support either side. He proposed a compromise instead.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also criticized the Supreme Court’s decision made on Friday. 

According to Vox, Pelosi said in a statement that: “The Supreme Court’s decision tonight to allow President Trump to defy the bipartisan will of the Congress and proceed with contracts to spend billions of dollars on his wall undermines the Constitution and the law.” 

People on Twitter also had some thoughts about the latest development in funding and where that money is coming from.

One user said that this might bode well for him in the 2020 presidential election.

The ACLU said in a statement to the New York Times that they will continue to ask the federal appeals court to “halt the irreversible and imminent damage from Trump’s border wall.” 

“Our Constitution’s separation of powers will be permanently harmed should Trump get away with pillaging military funds for a xenophobic border wall Congress denied,” Dror Ladin, an attorney with the ACLU, told the NYT

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