WASHINGTON, D.C. (NBC) – The Trump administration does not have the authority to divert military funds to the border wall, the Ninth Circuit Court ruled.
A federal appeals court made the ruling Friday, just days after President Donald Trump’s visit to the wall.
In a 2-1 ruling, the court said the transfer of $2.5 billion circumvents Congress, which holds the authority to appropriate money.
The American Civil Liberties Union applauded the ruling saying the wall is leveling protected lands, desecrating cultural sites and destroying wildlife.
The fight over Defense Department funds stems from Trump’s national emergency declaration on the U.S.-Mexico border last year.
The president extended the declaration in February even as border arrests began to decline.