President-elect Donald Trump supports a proposal to request the Congress to initially pay for building a wall between the United States and Mexico.
The president-elect said that Mexico will repay the U.S. for the construction of the wall, Bloomberg reported.
“Any money spent on building the Great Wall (for sake of speed), will be paid back by Mexico later!” Trump tweeted Friday. He was responding to reports that Trump’s transition team and House Republicans are considering to use a 2006 law that authorized building more than 700 miles of “physical barrier” on the southern U.S. border.
The 2006 Secure Fence Act, signed by former President George W. Bush, was never fully implemented and doesn’t expire. Originally, the fence act called for the construction of 850 miles of fence. The law was amended by legislators in 2008 to reduce the length to a minimum of 700 miles.
Sean Spicer, a Trump spokesman, told media that it “shouldn’t be news” that Trump is going to seek an appropriation from Congress to pay for the wall. He added that “there’s an ongoing discussion with Congress about how to fund it and obviously the logistics to make it work.”
There is a huge cost involved in building the border wall. It is expected to cost up to $14 billion on the construction of the fence. In addition to the construction expenses, a significant amount will be required every year for maintenance and border patrol staff.
New York Rep. Chris Collins believes that Trump could negotiate getting the money back from Mexico, CNN reported.
“When you understand that Mexico’s economy is dependent upon US consumers, Donald Trump has all the cards he needs to play,” Collins told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on “New Day.” “On the trade negotiation side, I don’t think it’s that difficult for Donald Trump to convince Mexico that it’s in their best interest to reimburse us for building the wall.”