Trump, calling for legal appeal, slams ‘activist Obama appointed judge’ over border wall ruling

President Trump on Saturday ripped into what he described as an “activist Obama appointed judge” after a federal judge blocked the administration’s plan to reallocate money to building a wall on the southern border with Mexico.

“Another activist Obama appointed judge has just ruled against us on a section of the Southern Wall that is already under construction,” he said. “This is a ruling against Border Security and in favor of crime, drugs and human trafficking.”


Trump went on to say that the administration is asking for “an expedited appeal.”

U.S District Court Judge Haywood Gilliam’s ruling late Friday temporarily prevents the administration from using reallocated funds for two wall-related projects in Arizona and Texas by diverting money that Congress has not approved.

Trump declared a national emergency in February and is using that declaration to redirect funding from the Pentagon, after Congress did not agree to the president’s demand for more than $5 billion in wall funding.

“Congress’s ‘absolute’ control over federal expenditures — even when that control may frustrate the desires of the executive branch regarding initiatives it views as important — is not a bug in our constitutional system. It is a feature of that system, and an essential one,” Gilliam, an appointee of former President Barack Obama, wrote in his opinion.

“In short, the position that when Congress declines the executive’s request to appropriate funds, the executive nonetheless may simply find a way to spend those funds ‘without Congress’ does not square with fundamental separation of powers principles dating back to the earliest days of our Republic,” he said.

Gilliam’s ruling does not stop the Trump administration from using other sources to fund the wall, and he rejected a request by California and 19 other states to prevent the diversion of $600 million in Treasury funds to the wall.


Trump’s declaration of a national emergency, coming after a 35-day government shutdown, was controversial on both sides of the aisle.  A resolution disapproving of the declaration passed both chambers of Congress, but was vetoed at the president’s desk. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., called it a “power grab by a disappointed president” in a statement.

Congress had OK’d $1.4 billion for border security, but it wasn’t close to the $5 billion Trump requested.

The White House eyed an additional $8 billion in existing funding that could be moved for the wall, $3.5 billion of which could be shifted over from the Defense Department’s military construction budget via the emergency declaration.

Trump predicted a difficult legal fight when he declared the national emergency, saying he believed it would end up in the Supreme Court.


“We will have a national emergency, and we will then be sued,” Trump said, adding that the federal appeals courts could well rule against his administration. “Then we’ll end up in the Supreme Court, and hopefully we’ll get a fair shake, and we’ll win at the Supreme Court — just like the [travel] ban.”

The case is one of a number of lawsuits the administration is facing over the declaration. On Thursday, a judge in Washington heard arguments on a lawsuit from the House of Representatives that claims it violates the Constitution.

The judge was considering whether the House can sue the president instead of resolving a dispute through the political process.

Fox News’ Louis Casiano, Brooke Singman and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Man arrested after drugs found during house search

A man was arrested on Friday after four pounds of methamphetamine, one pound of heroin and paraphernalia relating to drug sales were found at his residence.

The Kern County Probation Department said officers conducted a home call on Jose Flores, who is on mandatory supervision, at his residence in the 300 block of Golden Dr. The items were found during a search of the residence.

Flores was arrested and booked into the Kern County Jail for violating supervision and various drug-related offenses.

Gold Star widow discusses husband’s ultimate sacrifice ahead of Memorial Day

The wife of a Marine and veteran firefighter who died following a suicide bombing in Afghanistan said Friday her husband “just did the right thing.”

Shannon Slutman, the widow of Staff Sgt. Christopher Slutman, told “Fox & Friends” her husband was the “most humble man you ever wanted to meet” and always “did what was right.”

“He just did the right thing,” Slutman said. “He didn’t expect anybody to put him up on a pedestal, [or] to put it on Facebook.”

She said Sgt. Slutman was once given an award by the FDNY but didn’t tell anyone about it.

“One of his best friends was so angry with him because he didn’t tell him,” she said.


She recalled telling her children in the wake of their father’s death he “would want us to be strong and live every day to the fullest because that’s exactly what he did.”

Sgt. Slutman died April 8 near Bagram Airfield, a U.S. military base. Two other members of Slutman’s Massachusetts-based Marine Reserve unit also were killed.

Shannon Slutman said she was overcome with gratitude for the amount of people who came out to express their condolences after her husband’s casket was returned to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware.

She said firetrucks and people with American flags lined roadways and overpasses along their journey back to New York City.

“Private citizens, firemen, police, all the first responders, I mean, it was an extremely emotional experience,” she said.

Frank Siller, of the Tunnels to Towers Foundation, joined Slutman on “Fox & Friends” to show his support for the Gold Star widow and her family.


Siller said his foundation is hoping to help the Slutman family pay off its mortgage.

“What a sacrifice by a husband, a superhero,” he said. “Someone who not only serves his country, also a New York City firefighter who serves his community.”

Fox News’ Greg Norman contributed to this report.

Record snowfall blankets Mammoth Mountain, just in time for Memorial Day

New research recently linked a series of earthquakes near California’s Long Valley Caldera in the Mammoth Mountain area to heavy snowmelt during a wet winter. Researchers planned to watch for seismic activity as it pertains to snowmelt, which typically begins in late May to early June. The expectation is that there will be a large number of seismic swarms, as there have been in the past, but there’s no guarantee.

Jake Patterson sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole for kidnapping 13-year-old Closs and killing her parents

At today’s sentencing hearing for Jake Patterson, lawyers described the night he broke into the Closs family home, killed James and Denise Closs and kidnapped their 13-year-old daughter, Jayme.

Photos of the bathroom door Patterson broke down to get to Denise and Jayme Closs were displayed in court.

According to prosecutors and previous complaints, Patterson first killed James Closs as Jayme and her mother hid in a bathroom. As her mother called 911 from their hiding place, Patterson broke down the bathroom door.

Audio of that call was played in court today, depicting the chaotic moments and garbled screams.

Previously, Patterson told investigators Jayme’s mother had her arms wrapped around her daughter in a bear hug on the floor of the bathtub, the complaint said.

Here’s a photo of the broken door:

Woman’s body found in Delano vineyard

A woman’s body was found in a vineyard in Delano on Thursday.

The Delano Police Department said at around 5:45 p.m., officers were sent to the area of County Line Road and Road 128 after getting a report of a body that had been found in a field. The body was determined to be a woman in her late 20s or early 30s.

The cause of death is still being investigated, the department said.

While the department initially thought a vehicle may have been involved in the incident, that has since been ruled out, DPD said.

The case is still under investigation. Anyone with information about the case is urged to call 721-3377.

How the ‘Aladdin’ remake redefines a Disney princess with Naomi Scott’s Jasmine

Growing up in England, Naomi Scott, like so many other young girls, fell in love at an early age with Disney’s animated heroines — particularly Mulan, Pocahontas and Jasmine from “Aladdin.” But while those three are officially part of Disney’s juggernaut princess line of media franchises and toys, alongside the likes of Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Belle and Ariel, it wasn’t their ostensible princess-y trappings that enthralled Scott. It was something deeper.

Trump did not try to ‘trap’ Democrats with White House meeting: Kellyanne Conway

Counselor to President Trump Kellyanne Conway said on Thursday that Democrats’ allegation the administration set a trap for them was incorrect.

During “America’s Newsroom,” Conway told Bill Hemmer and Sandra Smith, “Well boy, then they’re easier marks than they even seem. Nobody set a trap for them.”

Conway said that the president was serious about infrastructure and that Democrats ruined the meeting an hour before when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters the president was engaged in a “cover-up.”

“They ruined it by an hour before that basically with her car running waiting for her saying he’s engaged in a cover-up and then coming over here and pretending everything’s great and then we’re just going to discuss infrastructure,” Conway said. “So look it was not a trap.”


Yesterday the president abruptly walked out of a meeting at the White House with Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and held a surprise press conference in the Rose Garden.

Latest from Fox News Flash

“I walked into the room and I told Senator Schumer and Speaker Pelosi, I want to do infrastructure… you can’t do it under these circumstances,” the president told reporters.

Any remaining hope of bipartisanship quickly faded when Pelosi and Schumer took to the mics on Capitol Hill following the president’s remarks.

In an interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” Thursday morning, Schumer said that the president was “ill-prepared” and that his team “looked for a way to back out.”


He also pointed to a Tuesday night letter from the White House which urged lawmakers to focus on passing the president’s renegotiated free trade agreement ahead of infrastructure.

“So, that was their first gambit. Then, they realized they had nothing to say on NAFTA, so I think probably early that morning they concocted this, you know, temper tantrum and he walked out,” Schumer said.


Conway retorted that Democrats are “not serious” about working with the president: “The president is serious. They can come back today if they want to talk about infrastructure. But, do they really? Is that what’s most important? They’re not even reading the polls.”

Smith asked Conway, “What is the ability for the White House to get something done here?” She noted the escalating tensions in Washington over the last two days.


Conway told “America’s Newsroom” the Democrats had been unresponsive on other issues like the president’s new immigration plan, trade, and drug pricing.

“We as an administration are going to keep barreling forward without Congress and doing things administratively if they’re not serious about working with us,” she said. “But look it’s only going to take 20 seats to win back 20 seats to get control of Congress again. There are 30 or 31 Democrats sitting in congressional districts that Donald Trump won in 2016 and I guarantee he’ll be visiting most of those really today to talk about the great progress for this country.”