Mexico Border Wall. Image USA Today

Sixteen US states sued president Donald Trump’s administration monday over his decision to declare a national emergency to fund a wall on the southern border with Mexico, saying the move violated the constitution.

The lawsuit, filed in a federal court in California, said the president’s order was contrary to the presentment clause that outlines legislative procedures and the appropriations clause, which defines congress as the final arbiter of public funds.

The move had been previously announced by Xavier Becerra the attorney general of California who said his state and others had legal standing because they risked losing moneys intended for military projects, disaster assistance and other purposes.

Several republican senators have decried the emergency declaration, saying it establishes a dangerous precedent and amounts to executive overreach.

California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon and Virginia are party to the complaint seeking an injunction.