Trump criticizes California over lawsuit against border wall
February 19, 2019
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is criticizing California's lead role in a multistate lawsuit challenging his emergency declaration to pay for a U.S.-Mexico border wall.
On Twitter Tuesday, Trump noted last week's decision by California Gov. Gavin Newsom to cancel a high-speed rail line between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Trump claims the "failed Fast Train project" was beset by "world record setting" cost overruns and had become "hundreds of times more expensive than the desperately needed Wall!"
Trump complained about the lawsuit filed in federal court in San Francisco. He incorrectly identified the plaintiffs as "16 cities" but later corrected that to "16 states."
California and 15 other states are parties to the suit filed Monday that alleges that Trump's declaration is unconstitutional.
Joining California in filing the lawsuit are the attorneys general of Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, and Virginia. All the states involved in the lawsuit have Democratic attorneys general.
Trump declared a national emergency to fulfill his promise of completing the wall.
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The move allows the president to bypass Congress to use money from the Pentagon and other budgets.
The states say diversion of military funding to wall-building will hurt their economies and deprive their military bases of needed upgrades. They say taking away funds from counter-drug efforts for the wall will also cause damage. California and New Mexico, the two Mexican border states in the lawsuit, say the wall will harm wildlife.
"President Trump cannot sidestep our Constitution for a political ploy," said Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford in a press release. "The Trump Administration's proposed diversion of funds would waste billions of dollars that is dedicated to supporting our military and law enforcement agencies. I am proud to join this lawsuit to defend our Constitution, our state's military bases, and Nevada's law enforcement agencies."