In fulfilling one of his most often repeated campaign promises, President Trump has now specified exactly what he wants to build along the U.S.-Mexico border to stop immigrants from entering this country illegally.
According to reports on Sunday, the proposed border wall as described in contracting notices would be 30 feet high and have an attractive appearance to those “looking at it from the north.”
However, rough terrain and many legal battles may pose burdensome obstacles to getting the wall built.
Below are the top three obstacles:
1) HIGH COST
We’ve all heard President Trump promise that Mexico would pay for the border wall — which has been estimated to cost between $12 billion to $21 billion — but Mexican officials have balked at this notion. In Trump’s first budget proposal to Congress, he asked for a $2.6 billion down payment for the wall.
Plans to cut federal spending from other programs in order to pay for the wall, as well as to increase the military’s budget, have not been received well by some lawmakers. White House spokesman Sean Spicer recently told reporters that they’re still looking at funding options and have not yet given up on getting Mexico to pay for it.
2) ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES
One problem facing the building of the wall across the 2,000-mile U.S.-Mexico border is the fact that they have to deal with the Rio Grande in Texas. According to a 1970 treaty with Mexico, anything built near that river cannot obstruct its flow. In Arizona, where the Colorado River runs along the border, the same treaty applies.
In addition, there are various environmental regulations which must be followed pertaining to certain portions of the border, including requirements for a “floating fence” along sand dunes, which allows the sand to move naturally.
3) LEGAL CHALLENGES
Most of the land along the Texas border is owned by families who have lived there for generations and aren’t eager to sell it to the government. Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama both tried to purchase privately-owned land in Texas and faced legal battles with private landowners. Efforts made by the Obama administration to buy privately-owned land in the Rio Grande Valley are still ongoing with the current administration.
In preparation for the legal fight to buy land on the border, Trump’s budget proposal includes a request for more lawyers.
According to Spicer, however, no obstacle will be too great because the Trump administration is prepared to do whatever it takes to fulfill the president’s promise to secure the southern border.
H/T: Associated Press
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