In a victory for the Trump Administration, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit reversed a lower court which ruled that the Trump Administration could not use $3.6 billion from military construction funds for a construction of new border wall. It was a mixed week for the White House. The ruling comes as another judge ordered the reinstatement of the DACA program.
The decision is a reversal of the December 2019 ruling by U.S. District Judge David Briones. This may prove moot since President-elect Joe Biden has pledged to stop further construction of the wall as soon as he gets into office.
Notably, the Supreme Court is set to review a ruling in the Ninth Circuit that the use of military construction funds was unlawful due to environmental threats.
It is important to note that this was a decision that turned on standing not the merits of the argument that such funds were effectively blocked by Congress. The divided panel ruled that El Paso County and the nonprofit Border Network for Human Rights did not have the sufficient injury to establish standing to challenge the funding.
As a long-standing “standing dove,” I tend to favor standing in such cases.
Here is the opinion: Fifth Circuit Border Ruling