A lawsuit against US President Donald Trump over the funding of Trump’s coveted border wall can still go ahead, a Washington court has ruled.
Democratic MPs had brought the case, but a lower court previously found they had no legal standing to charge the president.
The Democrats believe Trump has violated the constitution by starting the construction of the wall along the Mexican border without approval from the US parliament, aka Congress. Trump is also said to have acted unconstitutionally by spending money on the wall that Congress had intended for something else.
Three justices of an appeals court ruled on Friday that Trump has passed parliament by starting on the wall without permission. “The ironclad constitutional rule is that the executive cannot spend money until the House of Representatives and Senate approve it,” the ruling said.
The legal battle over the financing of the border wall led to a shutdown in early 2019, or temporary closure of the federal government due to a lack of money.
After Congress refused to allocate budget for the wall, Trump decided to turn the border into a national emergency to pump $ 8.1 billion into the project.
That money was intended for other purposes, such as combating organized crime. The Democrats in the House of Representatives believe Trump has bypassed the constitution to fulfil one of his central campaign promises.
The judgment of the Court of Appeal is not expected to result in the construction of the border wall coming to a standstill. The Supreme Court ruled this summer that this is not necessary while lawsuits are still pending.