President-Elect Donald Trump stated multiple times during his campaign that he would build a wall across the entire U.S. – Mexico border. He also stated that Mexico would pay for it. However, Trump has recently changed his plans and stated that the U.S. taxpayers will pay for the wall and Mexico will reimburse the U.S.
At campaign rallies and in debates during the campaign, President-Elect Donald Trump insisted that 1) a wall spanning the whole southern border of the U.S. was necessary and 2) Mexico would pay for it. Trump even met with the President of Mexico in order to discuss the wall and other immigration issues. However, during this meeting, the President of Mexico told Trump that Mexico would not pay for the wall. This was perhaps the first indicator that Trump’s plan to have a wall paid for by Mexico would not become a reality.
Mexico will Reimburse the U.S.?
In early January of 2017, Trump made the bold claim that he would ask Congress (aka taxpayers) to pay for the wall and have Mexico reimburse the U.S. Trump’s team has pointed out that the Mexican economy depends on U.S. consumers, meaning that Mexico will be obliged to reimburse the U.S. for the wall. Additionally, the Trump team has indicated that there is a Bush-era provision which may serve as grounds for having Congress appropriate funds to construction of the wall.
As the specifics of the wall are still being decided upon, there isn’t an exact number available for the cost of it. However, the cost will definitely be in the billions of dollars. Securing 1/3 of the border cost the Bush Administration about $2.4 billion dollars, so the price of securing the entire border may very well be around $10 billion.
Possible Government Shutdown?
It is also too early to tell if the entire Congress will be on board with this plan. Presumably, the Democrats will be strongly opposed and some Republicans may believe that government funds are better spent elsewhere. However, it is worth mentioning that some Congressmen have begun talks with Trump’s transition team over the specifics of the wall. This means that there is at least the potential for some Congressional support. Some have speculated paying for the wall may lead to a clash in Congress and threaten a government shutdown in April.
What do you think? Is President-elect Trump going back on his campaign promise?
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