Texas and Missouri attorneys general sue to force Biden to restart border wall construction

Attorneys General Ken Paxton of Texas and Eric Schmitt of Missouri filed a joint lawsuit Thursday seeking to force President Joe Biden's administration restart building the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court, argues the Biden administration's decision to not use the funds appropriated for the border wall is a violation of the Take Care clause of the U.S. Constitution, which says the president must "take care that the Laws be faithfully executed."


Biden issued a proclamation in January when he took office that halted the construction of the border wall, including projects that were funded by Congress specifically for the wall. The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, which took effect in December 2020, designated $1.4 billion for a border wall. The Homeland Security Department canceled construction contracts for the wall in Texas on Oct. 8.

"The President had neither constitutional nor statutory authority to refuse to spend funds Congress authorized mandating the construction of the border wall," the suit said. "Thus DHS acted without any authority to implement the January 20 Proclamation, including cancelling contracts entered into for the purpose of building the border wall."

There has been a surge in border crossings, an issue that stretched from the Trump administration into the Biden administration. Border arrests surged to an all-time high, more than 1.7 million, in fiscal 2021, which ended in September, federal data show. Former President Donald Trump made building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border a central tenet of his agenda to secure the barrier.

"Time and again, the Biden Administration has refused to take concrete action to quell the worsening border crisis, inviting the cartels and human and drug smugglers to take advantage of our porous border," Schmitt said in a press release. "Without a border wall, illegal immigrants, coyotes, and bad actors can simply march across our southwest border and into the interior. The border wall needs to be built, the funds have been appropriated to continue to build the wall, and yet the Biden Administration outright refuses to do so. As Missouri continues to fight human trafficking, an unsecured border only worsens that scourge of human trafficking across the country and within Missouri's borders ... If Joe Biden continues to refuse to take the necessary steps to secure the border, Missouri will."

The Washington Examiner reached out to DHS for comment on the lawsuit.


Paxton and Schmitt sued the Biden administration over its cancellation of Trump's "Remain in Mexico" policy, which forces people to wait in Mexico while seeking asylum in the United States, and scored a victory when the Supreme Court ordered it to be reinstated in August.

Members of Congress have also made efforts to curb the stream of immigration along the southern border.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz introduced the "Stop the SURGE Act" Tuesday, which would create new ports of entry to address the "man-made crisis on the South Texas border."

Original Location: Texas and Missouri attorneys general sue to force Biden to restart border wall construction


Washington Examiner Videos

Sign Up For Free: Denver AM Update

Your morning rundown of the latest news from overnight and the stories to follow throughout the day.

Success! Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter.