Kevin McAleenan, acting Homeland Security secretary, said Sunday the president got a “big victory” with the Supreme Court ruling last week the administration could go ahead with border wall construction while the legal fight over funding for the barrier moves through lower courts.
Mr. McAleenan, in an appearance on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures,” said they plan to have more than 200 miles of wall built by next year.
He added the transferring of $2.5 billion from the Department of Defense is going to allow the building activity to more than double, noting they are “building every day down there.”
The 5-4 ruling, pitting the conservative wing of the court against the liberal wing, reversed a lower court injunction on the construction and transfer of funds after activist groups sued, saying the president could not unilaterally take Pentagon money to fulfill a campaign promise to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Mr. McAleenan also said the situation on the border is improving by the minute, noting there has been a 28 percent drop over the Summer in apprehensions with the help of international partners.
“Mexico has stepped up,” he told Fox News’ Maria Bartiromo.
He also said Guatemala has targeted criminal organization who have been smuggling families and children.
“We’ve made a lot of progress … but we got more to do,” he said.