Will President Trump Build His Wall?

“Build the wall! Build the wall!” The chanting filled the stadium in Cadillac Michigan, as 2016 Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump rallied for votes The refrain had fast become a warcry to millions of Americans, inspired by his promise to construct a huge wall on the American-Mexico border

“It will be big and beautiful” he promised And the people responded with their votes On November 8th, against the odds, Trump was elected America’s 45th President Many wonder wonder if his January inauguration will mark the start of this controversial project along the 3200 kilometre border Whilst on the campaign trail, Trump announced his intentions to build an “impenetrable, physical, tall, powerful, beautiful, southern border wall"" between the U

S and Mexico to stem illegal immigration into the States The President-elect said the measure is necessary to halt the influx of Mexican people, “drugs and rapists” entering the country According to a Pew Research study, 79% of Trump supporters are in favour of the wall To this extent, his mandate rests on him upholding this promise

Trump’s election manifesto stated that when elected he will “begin working on an impenetrable physical wall on the Southern border, on day one” – his very first day office – that Mexico will pay for Importantly, while the Mexican government insists it will not finance the wall, other political figures have said they would support its construction using US government funds Accessing these funds would require the support of Congress, which with majority Republican houses, is answerable to Trump

Senior party members have already come out in support of the policy and suggested ways to viably build it House Representative Louie Gohmert stated “It's amazing what you can get Congress to do when you lead and push them in the right direction And actuallywe had appropriated money during the Bush administration that didn't get spent for the wall, so, yeah, it's going to be great to have somebody that's actually following the law” This enthusiasm echoes Trump’s sustained zeal for the project In a post-election CBS interview with Lesley Stahl, Trump indicated potential construction plans, saying the wall could be built from a fence Indeed, rather than being an outlandish, radical policy, the wall could be the natural progression of government efforts to clamp down on illegal border migration Border Control – which had 4,000 personnel in the 1990s – now has over 21,000 staff

The government funnels $5 billion dollars more into immigration control than all other federal law enforcement combined In this case, the wall arguably just consolidates existing government priorities Others have discussed the significance of “wall” as a nebulous term Trump has not set out precise specifications for the wall He could therefore put in place a fence or other low-cost barrier along the border, and still be keeping his election promise

Trump estimates the wall would cost between $10 and $12 billion However, this is a gross underestimate A study by the Washington Post found the wall would more realistically cost at least double that Given that the Mexican President – Enrique Pena Nieto – has refused to pay for the the wall, this huge sum would have to come from US

government funds Despite Louie Gohmert’s confidence, the odds are against Congress paying for the wall Given the US national debt is already $20 trillion, even the fact Congress is controlled by Republicans might not be enough to get sufficient support for the wall

Washington University’s Immigration Law Professor Steve Legomsky says “Congress won’t fund the kind of wall Trump promisedto save face, President Trump and congressional leaders will likely agree to a modest extension of the existing border fence” The wall would also pose a number of environmental and conservation problems

The border zone is a “delicate” ecosystem, which sees bird and animal populations migrate between the countries several times a year in order to survive Black Jaguars would risk extinction if the wall went up, as would American black bears since they need to mate with Mexican bears Prominent science journals like Nature have already written about the perilous impact on wildlife the wall would have Any plans would likely suffer intense criticism from the conservationist lobby This would be on top of the expected backlash from the 61% of Americans who oppose the wall, according to a study by Pew Research

From lush vegetation to arid desert, the border traverses extremely diverse terrain This includes natural floodplains, where the ground is unstable Practically, these make a continuous wall along the entire border an impossible feat of engineering In the weeks after his election, Trump released a video in which he announced his plan for his first 100 days in office Astonishingly, given that during the election he said the wall was his first priority, it did not get a single mention in the video

Journalist Katherine Krueger suggests this means he no longer intends to go through with his wall plan Trump has also softened his stance on abolishing Obamacare and prosecuting Hillary Clinton, so another u-turn on Trump policy is not out of the question On November 24th 2016, Mexican construction company GCC reached out to Trump, offering to build the wall On December 1st, Trump said the wall wouldn’t have to span the entire border because of geographical features like rivers and mountains The idea is therefore still on the agenda, although it will probably never be what Trump promised

Given how prominent Trump’s pledge to clamp down on illegal Mexican immigration was during his campaign, he will likely have to honour it to retain credibility President Trump will probably build his wall But in what form, only the future will tell

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*


This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.