President Trump reportedly plans to again divert money from the Pentagon for border wall construction, and significantly more than Congress authorized in this year’s budget.
Trump, The Washington Post reports, is preparing to divert $7.2 billion in Pentagon funds for border wall construction this year, about five times what he had been authorized to spend by Congress. The funds would again come from military construction projects as well as counternarcotics funding, the Post says.
This comes after a federal judge last month said Trump couldn’t use $3.6 billion in repurposed military construction funds for the border wall, instituting a nationwide permanent injunction. But an appeals court recently lifted this injunction while the legal challenges continue. The Trump administration saw this recent decision as “additional encouragement to take the money again this year,” the Post reports.
The $7.2 billion in funding will be enough to finish about 885 miles of new fencing by spring 2022, the Post says. The Trump administration has finished 101 miles of new barriers so far, which the Post notes is “far less than the 450 miles the president has promised to erect by the end of the year.” With this $7.2 billion, Trump will have allocated $18.4 billion in federal funds for border fencing during his administration.
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