A federal appeals court allowed the administration to use a certain set of Defense Department funds for the construction of the border wall after a lower court blocked the administration from dipping into them last month.
The ruling marks a victory for President Donald Trump, who has sought to shore up funds for his signature border wall. The money is separate from other funds that the Supreme Court allowed to be used last year.
In a 2-1 ruling, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals granted a stay of a Texas judge’s order, which the administration had appealed. The case is still ongoing.
The use of Defense Department funds for the President’s border wall has received pushback from numerous groups and states, which have argued the administration circumvented Congress to shore up wall funds.
The latest ruling applies to the military construction funds. Last September, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper authorized diverting $3.6 billion in the construction funds for 11 wall projects on the southern border with Mexico. The Pentagon said at the time that half the money was coming from deferred projects overseas, and the other half was planned for projects in the US.
The ruling doesn’t apply to the use of other funds, including counter-drug and Treasury Forfeiture Funds, that have been designated for wall construction.