By Scott Weiser
In order for the border wall to ever get built a couple of things must happen: First, the federal government must exercise eminent domain and take a strip of land perhaps a mile wide along the length of the border, paying the private property owners “just compensation” as constitutionally required. Second, the strip of land so acquired must be declared to be a national security border control zone and placed under the control of the U.S. Army.
Third, Congress must immediately pass a law exempting national security border control zones from any or all of the provisions of the National Environmental Protection Act, the Endangered Species Act, the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act and any other law that can be used to interfere with the construction of the wall and associated border security installations, including roads, bridges, guard towers, garrisons, military bunkers or any other structures that the President determines are necessary for the protection of the United States against intrusion or attack.
Otherwise every single foot of the wall will be tied up in enviro-whacko leftist environmental lawsuits until hell freezes over. This is a matter of national security, so there must be an exemption from obstructive environmental regulations for such national security border control zone installations. As a military reservation, the U.S. Army will have jurisdiction over entry enforcement.
The problem is that current law permits citizens and environmental groups to file obstructive EPA lawsuits even on military reservations in order to enforce their desired view of the NEPA. While this may be appropriate for military installations where accommodations can be made to protect the environment where no military emergency exists, securing the border is an entirely different matter of national security and the need is both overwhelming and immediate and obstruction cannot be permitted.
Therefore any obstructionism based on environmental arguments must be short-stopped by Congress as if this was a war-time military operation to prevent a physical invasion of enemy troops across the border, which would permit any sort of defensive structures deemed necessary by the Commander in Chief without having to go to court in order to provide for the national defense.
I suggest a law called the “National Defense Critical Border Infrastructure Exemption Act” that says, pretty simply,
“Congress shall have the power to declare a national defense border control emergency. Such declaration shall authorize the President to determine, in his sole judgment, what national defense critical border infrastructure is required to be provided for the defense of the nation.
Pursuant to this authority the President shall have plenary power to exempt national defense critical border infrastructure from any or all provisions of environmental law or other law that would inhibit or delay the ability of the President to provide infrastructure critical to national security border defense.
Pursuant to a presidential determination that national defense critical border infrastructure is required, judicial review of such determination is prohibited.”