Nancy Pelosi forbade the move and had her committee chairman officially deny the Pentagon’s decision to reallocate unspent money to fund Trump’s wall.
The Pentagon ignored Pelosi. They just awarded two contracts, totaling over $1 billion, to build the wall.
And much to the horror of Nancy Pelosi, there does not seem to be much she can do to stop it.
True the Congress has the power of the purse, but over the years they have set aside piles of money with no set spending requirements to increase flexibility for our government.
That is the law and there is a precedent. So, any lawsuit Pelosi tries will be struck down. In other words, if she doesn’t like it, she can change the laws. Otherwise, she ought to remain silent and let Trump do his job. From CBS:
The Department of Defense has awarded nearly $1 billion in contracts to two companies for construction related to a wall along the southern border, the first such contracts to be awarded since President Trump declared a national emergency.
According to a notice on the Pentagon’s website, the Army Corps of Engineers awarded a $789 million contract to the company SLSCO Ltd., from Galveston, Texas, for “border replacement wall construction” in Santa Teresa, New Mexico.
Barnard Construction Co. Inc., of Bozeman, Montana, was awarded a contract worth $187 million for “design-bid-build construction project for primary pedestrian wall replacement” in Yuma, Arizona.
Six companies submitted bids for the first contract, with three received for the second. Both projects are expected to be completed by fall of 2020.
From The Daily Caller:
The New Mexico wall will be 30 feet high and include a five-foot anti-climb plate at the top, and is expected to be completed by October 2020. The Arizona project, expected to be done by September 2020, will include 18-foot bollard fencing with the same five-foot anti-climb plate.
The announcement marks the first contracts doled out to construction companies after Trump declared a national emergency in February, a move that allowed him to allocate billions more in funds for border wall spending. The Pentagon informed Congress in March that it had diverted funds to the Army Corps of Engineers for new border walls, upsetting lawmakers from both parties who demanded the Pentagon seek permission from them before altering its budget.
“You are not asking for our permission,” Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith said to acting Defense Secretary Pat Shanahan during a congressional hearing in March. “Now you understand the result of that likely is that the appropriations committee will no longer give the Pentagon reprogramming authority.”