A Chinese-owned company that has been blocked from building wind farms near a US navy test site in Oregon plans to sue President Barack Obama, arguing that his order to stop the project was unconstitutional.
Ralls, a company owned by two Chinese executives, believes the president violated constitutional protections on property ownership and legal process.
The company is seeking to have the order overturned, or be paid compensation for its losses.
A person familiar with the case said: “The president is not above the law, even if national security is involved.”
The case is the latest sign of tension over US openness to Chinese investment, which has been called into question after election campaign rhetoric from Mr Obama and Mitt Romney, his Republican challenger, about standing up to China over trade.
No one has ever before sued the US president over this type of ruling, but Ralls argues that Mr Obama exceeded his powers when he blocked the project and without giving a detailed justification.