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Trump asks Supreme Court to allow him to tap Pentagon money for the US-Mexico border wall
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump asked the U.S. Supreme Court to clear his administration to start using Pentagon funds for construction of more than 100 miles of fencing along the Mexican border.
Filing an emergency request Friday, the president asked the justices to lift a freeze on the money while a legal fight with the Sierra Club and another advocacy group plays out.
The request marks the first time the Supreme Court has been confronted with the dispute stemming from Trump's declaration of a national emergency in February to free up federal money for his border wall.
A federal trial judge in Oakland, Calif., blocked the use of $2.5 billion in a pair of orders in May and June. The judge and a San Francisco-based federal appeals court then refused to halt the rulings while the litigation went forward.
U.S. Solicitor General Noel Francisco told the high court that, because of federal budgetary rules, the administration risks not being able to use the money at all if the orders aren't lifted.
The administration wants to build barriers in stretches of New Mexico and Arizona that it says are used heavily by drug smugglers.
"The injunction frustrates the government's ability to stop the flow of drugs across the border in known drug-smuggling corridors," Francisco wrote.
The American Civil Liberties Union is representing the challengers.
"Congress has already considered and rejected Trump's xenophobic obsession with a wall," said Dror Ladin, the ACLU lawyer who argued the case at the lower court level. "And the Constitution is clear that the president has no power to disregard that decision."
Justice Elena Kagan, who handles emergency requests from that part of the country, ordered the Sierra Club to file a response by July 19.
©2019 Bloomberg News. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
SEE ALSO: The F-35 Of Walls: $1.57 Billion Spent For Just 1.7 Miles Of Fence On The US-Mexico Border
WATCH NEXT: The Border Mission In A Nutshell
This article originally appeared on Military.com.
Inside Forward Operating Base Oqab in Kabul, Afghanistan stands a wall painted with a mural of an airman kneeling before a battlefield cross. Beneath it, a black gravestone bookended with flowers and dangling dog tags displays the names of eight U.S. airmen and an American contractor killed in a horrific insider attack at Kabul International Airport in 2011.
It's one of a number of such memorials ranging from plaques, murals and concrete T-walls scattered across Afghanistan. For the last eight years, those tributes have been proof to the families of the fallen that their loved ones have not been forgotten. But with a final U.S. pullout from Afghanistan possibly imminent, those families fear the combat-zone memorials may be lost for good.
After a string of high profile incidents, the commander overseeing the Navy SEALs released an all hands memo stating that the elite Naval Special Warfare community has a discipline problem, and pinned the blame on those who place loyalty to their teammates over the Navy and the nation they serve.
A group of vets are raising money to pay for a medal the Iraqi government awarded them, but never delivered
In June 2011 Iraq's defense minister announced that U.S. troops who had deployed to the country would receive the Iraq Commitment Medal in recognition of their service. Eight years later, millions of qualified veterans have yet to receive it.
The reason: The Iraqi government has so far failed to provide the medals to the Department of Defense for approval and distribution.
A small group of veterans hopes to change that.
For a cool $8.5 million, you could be the proud owner of a "fully functioning" F-16 A/B Fighting Falcon fighter jet that a South Florida company acquired from Jordan.
The combat aircraft, which can hit a top speed of 1,357 mph at 40,000 feet, isn't showroom new — it was built in 1980. But it still has a max range of 2,400 miles and an initial climb rate of 62,000 feet per minute and remains militarized, according to The Drive, an automotive website that also covers defense topics, WBDO News 96.5 reported Wednesday.