World America 06 Jan 2017 Donald Trump on wall ...

Donald Trump on wall: Mexico will pay us back

AP
Published Jan 6, 2017, 6:04 pm IST
Updated Jan 6, 2017, 6:50 pm IST
Trump would rely on existing law that authorizes fencing and other technology along the southern border.
US President-elect Donald Trump. (Photo: AP)
 US President-elect Donald Trump. (Photo: AP)

Washington: President-elect Donald Trump says Mexico will reimburse taxpayers for a new border wall and that US money spent will be for the "sake of speed."

Trump's aides are considering a plan to ask Congress to ensure money is available in US coffers for the wall. But Trump would rely on existing law that authorizes fencing and other technology along the southern border.

 

The potential approach was confirmed by two congressional officials and a senior transition official with knowledge of the discussions; all spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

Trump said in a tweet Friday, "The dishonest media does not report that any money spent on building the Great Wall (for sake of speed), will be paid back by Mexico later!"

"There's a lot of things that can be done within current law," said Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla., a long time proponent of comprehensive immigration reform, though he emphasized that a lasting solution on immigration would take action by Congress. "You cannot minimize the potential impact of the administration doing what they can do under the law," he said.

 

However, some immigration hard-liners have already expressed the desire to see Congress take a vote, given how prominent the wall was during Trump's presidential campaign, and their desire to act on the issue.

Trump's vow to build an impenetrable, concrete wall along the southern border was his signature campaign proposal.

"Build the wall!" supporters would chant at his rallies. Who's going to pay for it?" Trump would ask them.

"Mexico!" Trump often promised the wall would be built of hardened concrete, rebar and steel as tall as his venues' ceilings, and would feature a "big, beautiful door" to allow legal immigrants to enter.

 

Most experts viewed such promises as unrealistic and impractical, and Trump himself sometimes allowed that the wall would not need to span the entire length of the border, thanks to natural barriers like rivers. After winning the election, he said he'd be open to stretches of fencing.

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