New Mexico to sue Trump over emergency wall declaration

February 18, 2019
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FILE - In this Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019, file photo, New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham talks after signing an executive order for state agencies to aggressive pursue strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Santa Fe, N.M. Grisham ordered the withdrawal of the majority of the state's National Guard troops from the U.S. border with Mexico on Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019, in a move that challenges President Donald Trump's description of a security crisis. (AP Photo/Morgan Lee, File)

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico plans to join other states in suing President Donald Trump over his emergency declaration to fund a wall at the U.S. border with Mexico, the state’s Democratic attorney general and governor announced Monday.

Trump says immigrants are invading the country and has declared a national emergency to bypass Congress to use money from the Pentagon and counterdrug efforts to fulfill his promise of completing the border wall.

Hector Balderas and Lujan Grisham said the president’s declaration would improperly divert funds from crucial efforts to protect New Mexican residents and also put the border state’s economy at risk.

Lujan Grisham has repeatedly challenged Trump’s description of a security crisis on the border and recently withdrew most of the state’s National Guard contingent, leaving about a dozen troops in a well-traveled corridor for cross-border migrants.

On Monday, she said Trump’s border wall doesn’t address real humanitarian and safety problems at the border.

“There is zero real-world basis for the emergency declaration, and there will be no wall,” she said in a statement.

Colorado and California also have said they will sue, and the American Civil Liberties Union and the nonprofit watchdog group Public Citizen have announced legal action.

Balderas said he was “appalled that President Trump would bypass the rule of law, manufacture an ‘emergency,’ and weaken our national defense and readiness for a potential terrorist attack or catastrophic natural disaster.”