The Trump administration prevailed at the Supreme Court in a lawsuit claiming that the president could not divert funds from the Pentagon in order to pay for the construction of the wall at the southern border.
The court ruled by a 5-4 vote on Friday that construction could continue on the wall during the pendency of the lawsuit as it proceeds through the court system.
The lawsuit will be taken up eventually for consideration by the Supreme Court, but a final decision is not likely to be made before the election is completed in November.
Justice Stephen Breyer said in his dissent to the order that it would likely serve as a final judgment.
“The Court’s decision to let construction continue nevertheless I fear, may operate, in effect, as a final judgment,” said Breyer.
The lawsuit was filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Sierra Club. The ACLU responded to the ruling in a statement saying that it will also seek for the parts of the border wall built with the diverted funds to be destroyed.
“The fight continues. The administration has admitted that the wall can be taken down if we ultimately prevail, and we will hold them to their word and seek the removal of every mile of unlawful wall built,” they tweeted.
“Every lower court to consider the question has ruled President Trump’s border wall illegal, and the Supreme Court’s temporary order does not decide the case. We’ll be back before the Supreme Court soon to put a stop to Trump’s xenophobic border wall once and for all,” they added in a second tweet.
The lawsuit applied to $2.5 billion that the president diverted from Department of Defense funding for the border wall.
The construction of the border wall was a large part of the president’s campaign for election in 2016, while on the other end of the political spectrum, Democrats have claimed that a border wall is just an expression of xenophobia and racism.
While the president has argued that a border wall is necessary to more efficiently enforce immigration law, in recent months the coronavirus pandemic has also spurred supporters of the wall to point to reports of the virus spreading through illegal immigration.
Here’s more about the diversion of funds for the border wall: