President Trump has directed the Army Corp of Engineers to look into “possible” ways to fund the wall.
Trump may tap into the $13.9 billion emergency supplemental fund.
The White House has directed the Army Corps of Engineers to “look at possible ways of funding border security,” Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told Fox News on Thursday night, as the ongoing partial federal government shutdown over money for a border wall is less than two days away from becoming the longest in the nation’s history.
Separately, Fox News is told the White House directed the Corps to examine the February 2018 emergency supplemental, which included disaster relief for California, Florida, Texas, and Puerto Rico, among other states, to see what unspent funds could be diverted to a border wall, according to a congressional aide familiar with the matter.
Such a move still could require the president to declare a national emergency in order to access those funds to build a wall, because they were earmarked for a different purpose. The discussions with the Corps suggest the White House is closely looking at the possibility of declaring such an emergency, as Trump has floated repeatedly in recent days.
Sanders said Trump has not met with the Corps to discuss the matter.
Approximately $13.9 billion is available from the congressionally approved February 2018 supplemental spending bill, intended to cover natural disasters, and much of the available money comes from flood control projects, Fox News is told.
The Military Construction appropriations bill could provide additional funding in the event of an emergency declaration.