US Sends Envoy To Mexico As Congress Turns Its Back To Trump’s Wall

Despite President Donald Trump's confidence, his plan to build a wall may be thwarted by Congress over cost concerns. This will surely bring a smile to the Mexican president's face.

As Congress resists the idea of building a wall between Mexico and the United States, President Donald Trump is sending his first high-profile envoys to Mexico.

Raising concerns with the cost of the wall, Washington seems to have abandoned the president in his quest to fulfill his top campaign promise, leaving him few options as he might only be able to raise a “fence covering a few hundred miles,” The Guardian reports.

This crack in Trump’s wall plans will probably bring a smile to Mexican President Enrique Peña Neto’s face as he meets with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and John Kelly, the head of Homeland Security. This week's talks will be held Wednesday and Thursday in Mexico City, and one of the issues being discussed is the Trump administration’s new directive regarding deportation policies.

The memo released recently expands the pool of immigrants who should be under extra scrutiny while also restricting asylum claims. Non-Mexicans crossing the border would also be prioritized and instead of being flown to their country of origin, they would be sent to Mexico. An issue that the Mexican president will probably want to have addressed during the meeting with U.S. officials.

Despite Trump’s confidence that a wall will be built, The Guardian reports that “bureaucratic, budgetary and logistical forces may turn the wall mainly into a fence.” Even as Kelly tells reporters that the wall’s construction could begin within months, the administration hasn’t presented a concrete plan to Congress. And that’s because key government agencies believe that the construction of a wall will just cost too much.

If the leaked U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s preliminary internal report is correct, the first phase of a “fence” construction would focus on California and Texas, covering only 26 miles. In the second phase, the fence would cover 151 miles in Arizona and Texas, while the third phase would link the barriers coast-to-coast, covering an unspecified 1,080 miles.

If Trump insists on building this wall, the cost to the taxpayers would be astronomical. As blue collar America’s main concerns revolve around taxes, they may feel betrayed if the president has to raise taxes to finish his No. 1 campaign promise. Only time will tell if he will sacrifice his base to meet his goal.

Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters, Mike Blake

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