Homeland Security Chief Michael Chertoff Invokes Power to Bypass Laws to Build Border Fence

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff on Monday invoked his power to bypass certain laws to restart construction of a fence on the Arizona-Mexico border.

Chertoff's action allows construction to go forward on about seven miles of fence in the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area near Naco, Ariz.

Work on nearly two miles of the fence had been suspended since Oct. 10, when a federal district judge ordered a delay on its construction.

She ruled the federal government did not fully study the environmental impact of the fence.

Congress gave Chertoff the power to waive environmental and other laws to build border barriers when it passed the REAL ID Act in 2005.