National Emergency/Border Wall case (El Paso County v. Trump)

In February 2019, the President proclaimed a “National Emergency” on the U.S. – Mexico border. The President said that because Congress had refused to fund the border wall he wanted, he would build it anyway, using money expressly appropriated by Congress for other purposes.

El Paso County and the Border Human Rights Network sued in federal district court in Texas, claiming that the President’s actions violated the Appropriations Clause, the National Emergencies Act, and other statutory and Constitutional provisions.

We are representing El Paso County and the Border Network for Human Rights as part of a litigation team including Protect Democracy, O’Melveney & Myers, Wilkie, Farr & Gallagher, Stu Gerson and Larry Tribe.

On October 11, 2019, a federal judge ruled that  the Trump administration’s use of funds pursuant to the National Emergency Act violated the 2019 Consolidated Appropriations Act.

In light of this development, our legal team—which represents El Paso County and the Border Network on Human Rights—filed a supplemental brief asking the court to permanently enjoin the Department of Homeland Security from using those funds for the border wall anywhere along the U.S.-Mexico border.  

On December 10, 2019, a federal district judge permanently enjoined the government from spending anything more than what Congress appropriated for the border wall.


Plaintiffs’ Motion for Summary Judgment

Defendants’ Summary Judgment Opposition and Cross Motion

Plaintiffs’ Summary Judgment and Reply Brief

Summary Judgement and Opinion

Plaintiffs’ Brief on Scope of Remedy

Defendants’ Brief on Scope of Remedy

Injunction Opinion