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Brennan Bobbie

Court of Appeals Upholds Lower Court’s Decision to Deny Emergency Appropriation of Funds for Border Walls

by Brennan Bobbie

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals handed down a ruling that upholds a lower court’s decision to deny the Trump administration the right to appropriate funds outside of Congressional approval. The appeal to reverse the lower court’s stay order was put forward by the Justice Department, on behalf of the Trump administration. That way, the latter can move forward in a supposed emergency need to reinforce the border walls located in Arizona, California, and New Mexico for security reasons.

The 3-judge panel of the Appeals Court though was not unanimous in arriving at the decision. Judge N. Randy Smith, an appointee of President George W. Bush, disagreed saying that a ruling in favor of the plaintiffs, the Southern Border Communities Coalition and the American Civil Liberties Union, is an approach that is contradictory to the basic fundamentals of judicial review. His opinion is that the majority of the panel members created a constitutional issue where none had existed. Mainly because the complainants who obtained the injunction, have no right to take part in what is actually a dispute between the U.S. president and Congress.

The dispute refers to Donald Trump’s insistence on spending as much as $8 billion for the construction and reinforcement of the U.S.-Mexico border walls, an amount that exceeded the $1.375 billion approved by Congress for border barriers. Congress denied his initial request for a $5.7 billion budget for wall-building this fiscal year, Trump’s insistence and disapproval of the national budget for the fiscal year led to a 5-week, partial shutdown of government offices and agencies.

Although Trump later relented by finally approving the national budget in order to lift the shutdown, he pursued the matter by calling a state of national emergency. In doing so, he gained the executive power to appropriate the budgets of other departments for the perceived emergency purpose of enhancing the security of the country via the border walls.

How the 9th District Court of Appeals Ruled

The two other members of the 3-judge panel, Judge Richard Clifton and Judge Michelle Friedland, wrote in a 75-page order that president Trump’s attempt to transfer Defense Department construction funds amounting to $2.5 billion in order to pursue and build the border wall project beyond what was appropriated by Congress, appeared as a clear violation of federal laww.

The Constitution delegates to Congress, the power to make decisions on how the government is to spend taxpayers’ money. More so where Congress added language that specifically states flexibility of budget does not include use for purposes previously denied by lawmakers. Judge Clifton and Friedland explained that

“Congress did not appropriate money to build the border walls Defendants (the Trump administration) seek to build here. Presumably, Congress decided such construction at this time was not in the public interest. It is not for us (the judicial branch) to reach a different conclusion.”

Moreover, Judges Clifton and Friedland cited the likelihood of the Trump administration’s violation of Appropriations Clause of the Constitution, which disallows drawing from the Treasury for purposes other that those appropriated by law.— the latter being the national budget that he initially refused to approve.

Trump Using Impeachment Baiting Techniques says House Speaker Pelosi

by Brennan Bobbie

President Trump, as noted by Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been continuously making taunts aimed at goading House Democrats to launch impeachment proceedings against him. According to the House Speaker, Trump’s intentions is to instill divisiveness not only among House Democrats but to the entire nation as well.

Trump’s impeachment baiting techniques all the more strengthen Ms. Pelosi and other House Leaders’ conviction of first setting out probes into all matters regarded as impeachable grounds, rather than directly go into impeachment proceedings.

That way, the truth will come out and validate all grounds for impeachment; including Trump’s multiple attempts to obstruct justice with regard to Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s proven interference in the 2016 presidential elections.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says that nearly every day, this US president is providing potential grounds for his own impeachment. In a recent Georgetown event, Ms. Pelosi reiterated that actually going into impeachment proceedings before the truth behind all Trump’s impeachable actions has been uncovered, would be divisive for the country.

The errant US president will make appeals to his supporters, particularly voters in the forthcoming presidential elections. That he is being politically persecuted by the ruling House Democrats, based on false accusations.

Still, House Speaker Pelosi made it clear that they intend to defend the right of the Democratic majority to fully investigate the activities of Trump and his administration, saying,

“We (the House of Representatives) have a path where we are investigating, exercising our constitutional responsibility to have oversight and also our constitutional mandate as a separate branch of government to hold the other branch accountable, predicated on the fact that no person is above the law, not even the President of the United States.”

Trump’s Campaign Strategy Includes Portraying Himself as a President Under Siege

While continuously dropping baits for his impeachment, Trump allies on the other hand incessantly argue that the Democrat-led House investigations are politically motivated; and are all rooted on partisan reasons, mainly to destroy Trump’s reputation.

Should House Democrats proceed directly with impeachment proceedings, they would be playing right into Trump’s ability to manipulate and twist turn of events in ways that appeal to his core supporters. A House impeachment hearing not supported by substantiated facts, will only reinforce a President-under-siege campaign narrative launched as early as 2 years ago; even before the results of Special Counsel Mueller’s report was made public.

Such a narrative can be gleaned in Trump’s fundraising campaign emails, in which the contents included appeals for defending the president against an unjust impeachment. In reality, the imaginary impeachment is yet to happen, dependent on the results of the House Judiciary Committee’s deeper probe on the information presented by the Mueller Report.

Trump’s Strategy Includes Slowing Down of Investigations by Fighting Subpoenas and Rejecting House Democrat’s Requests for Documents

In conjunction with Trump’s baiting techniques, the U.S. president is firmly holding his ground against potential impeachment by vowing to fight all subpoenas that will be served to him, to his political aides and to all staff of the White House Administration.

In an apparent attempt to slow down, if not block the House Democrat’s investigations, the White House rejected the House Judiciary Committee’s request for documents critical to the committee’s sweeping investigation into possible acts of obstruction of justice.

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