President Trump called the federal judge who temporarily blocked construction of the southern border wall “another activist Obama appointed judge,” and said his administration would appeal the decision.
Trump tweeted his response from Japan, where he is currently on a state visit. It was around 4 a.m. Sunday in Japan and around 4 p.m. Saturday on the East Coast.
U.S. District Judge Haywood S. Gilliam Jr. of the Northern District of California ruled Friday that some construction of the wall using money not appropriated by Congress be put on hold as the court considers a legal challenge to Trump’s decision to circumvent Congress to pay for his wall.
“Another activist Obama appointed judge has just ruled against us on a section of the Southern Wall that is already under construction,” Trump tweeted. “This is a ruling against Border Security and in favor of crime, drugs and human trafficking. We are asking for an expedited appeal!”
Trump declared a national emergency following a 35-day partial government shutdown over his unwillingness to fund the government without money for the wall, his signature campaign pledge. When congressional Democrats didn’t blink over the shutdown, Trump agreed to open the government, but subsequently shifted money from the Defense Department to use for the wall.
The plaintiffs in the case argue Trump violated the Constitution, which gives Congress the power of the purse.
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), co-chair of the House Progressive Caucus, cheered the news of the judge’s decision, tweeting, “Checks and balances stepping up AGAIN. Trump’s vanity wall is a waste of money and against our values as a country. Happy to see this blocked by a federal court!”
The ACLU responded to Trump with its own tweet: “The Constitution is clear: The president has no power to spend taxpayer money without Congressional authorization…We’re confident the courts will continue to enforce this bedrock principle of our democracy — as they have for centuries.”