House Democrats experienced a major setback when a federal judge denied their request to stop funds transfers which would be used to construct the border wall. Judge Trevor McFadden not only said that the House lacked the standing to bring the challenge forth, but also that the court shouldn’t step between President Donald Trump and Congress in the matter.
McFadden made the decision on June 3, stating, according to a report by CNN, “The Court declines to take sides in this fight between the House and the President.”
“This case presents a close question about the appropriate role of the Judiciary in resolving disputes between the other two branches of the Federal Government,” he continued. “To be clear, the court does not imply that Congress may never sue the Executive to protect its powers.”
The lawsuit pushed forward by the Democrat-controlled house argued that Trump’s decision to declare an emergency and shift funds to the construction of the border wall was a violation of the Constitution’s Appropriations Clause – a clause that gives Congress powers over federal spending.
Along with blocking the spending of money that had already been transferred, Congress asked McFadden to block any future transfers.
“Rarely in our Nation’s history has the Executive Branch launched such an assault on Congress’s exclusive legislative powers,” said an amicus brief that had been signed by a bipartisan group made up of over 100 former members of the House.
“Without action by this Court to prevent the Administration’s usurpation of congressional authority, the unchecked expansion of the Executive’s power at the expense of the Legislative Branch will threaten our democracy.”
Last month, McFadden held a hearing on the matter for nearly three hours before rendering his decision.
During the hearing, McFadden was skeptical about the judiciary stepping into the conflict between the House and Trump administration. In his ruling, his position on the matter became clear.
The House is appealing McFadden’s decision.