Trump has directed the Army Corps of Engineers to see if they can divert disaster relief money from California wildfire victims, and Hurricane victims in Florida, Texas, and Puerto Rico to pay for his wall.
When Trump talks about other funding mechanisms for the wall, this is what he means:
Fox confirms WH directs Army Corps of Engineers to see if it can divert money to border wall from disaster funding bill to cover wildfires in California, hurricanes in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico
— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) January 10, 2019
Trump does not have discretionary authority to move money that Congress appropriated for disaster relief into a fund to pay for his wall. Beyond the heartless cruelty of trying to eliminate funds for victims of natural disaster just so he can keep a campaign promise, which he won’t really be keeping because he promised that Mexico would pay for the wall, there is also the little problem of the Constitution.
The Executive Branch doesn’t appropriate funds. The role of the Executive Branch is to implement the laws and appropriations of Congress. There is no compelling legal argument that the Trump administration could make that diverting funds for disaster relief to the wall is within their powers.
The only way that the wall fiasco could get worse for Republicans is if Trump tries to pay for the wall by stealing money from disaster victims.
Trump is attempting an unconstitutional act of theft, which must be stopped by the courts.
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