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Nevada joins lawsuit against Trump border wall emergency

CARSON CITY — Nevada has joined onto a lawsuit challenging President Donald Trump’s move to declare a national emergency to fund a border wall he has promised to build dating back to his presidential campaign, the attorney general’s office announced Monday.

The lawsuit was filed in the Northern District of California and is being led by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra. Sixteen states have signed on to the suit.

“President Trump cannot sidestep our Constitution for a political ploy,” Nevada Attorney General Aaron Ford said in a statement Monday. “The Trump Administration’s proposed diversion of funds would waste billions of dollars that is dedicated to supporting our military and law enforcement agencies. I am proud to join this lawsuit to defend our Constitution, our state’s military bases, and Nevada’s law enforcement agencies.”

The lawsuit alleges that Trump’s declaration exceeds his presidential power and that it is simply an excuse to redirect federal funds to build the wall between the U.S. and Mexico.

“President Trump treats the rule of law with utter contempt,” Becerra said. “He knows there is no border crisis, he knows his emergency declaration is unwarranted, and he admits that he will likely lose this case in court.”

Joining in filing the lawsuit are the attorneys general of Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, and Virginia.

California has repeatedly challenged Trump in court.

“President Trump is manufacturing a crisis and declaring a made-up ‘national emergency’ in order to seize power and undermine the Constitution,” said California Gov. Gavin Newsom in a statement. “This ‘emergency’ is a national disgrace.”

In a joint statement Monday, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis and Attorney General Phil Weiser said they decided to join the effort in part because tens of millions of dollars could be diverted from military construction projects in Colorado to build a border wall.

“In this action, we are fighting for Colorado’s interests and defending the rule of law,” the two Democrats, who took office last month, said.

Contact Capital Bureau Chief Colton Lochhead at clochhead@reviewjournal.com or 775-461-3820. Follow @ColtonLochhead on Twitter. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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