SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – A U.S. judge on Tuesday sided with President Donald Trump’s administration and rejected an attempt by the state of California and environmental groups to stop the government from building a wall on the U.S. border with Mexico.
The lawsuit filed in a San Diego federal court alleged that Trump’s proposed wall violates federal environmental standards, as well as constitutional provisions regarding the separation of powers and states’ rights.
The plaintiffs asked U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel to stop the administration from pursuing the barrier until it demonstrates compliance with environmental laws.
The wall, a key item for Trump’s political base of supporters, has become a sticking point in talks to keep alive a federal program that protects from deportation young people who were brought to the United States illegally as children.
In his latest budget proposal to Congress, Trump requested $23 billion for border security, most of it for building the wall.
Curiel said his decision on Tuesday was not based on whether the underlying decisions to construct the wall “are politically wise or prudent.” Rather, Curiel said the Trump administration had not exceeded its legal authority in pursuing the project. (read more)