by Richard McCarty
From day one of his Administration, President Trump has been working to deliver on his campaign promises. Because the hostile, liberal media does such a lousy job of informing voters of Trump’s accomplishments, a quick rundown of some of the promises he has kept is in order. As promised, Trump has rolled back numerous regulations, signed tax cuts into law, appointed conservative Supreme Court justices, approved the Dakota Access Pipeline, ended Obama’s “Clean Power Plan,” withdrew the country from the Paris Climate Agreement, negotiated the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), withdrew the country from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, labelled China a currency manipulator, withdrew the United States from the Iran “deal,” defeated ISIS, moved the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, has forgone his presidential salary, and has helped bring back hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs. Furthermore, as with his promises of rebuilding the military and achieving energy independence, Trump is making considerable progress on building the wall.
To date, 66 miles of dilapidated barriers have been replaced with border wall; another 167 miles of border wall are currently under construction; and, by the end of next year, 450 miles of border wall should be completed. Nor does the good news end there: the 66 miles of new border wall are already paying off—big-time. In fact, border crossings along that stretch have dropped by 86 percent. Of course, the Trump administration is doing a lot more than just building a wall. It is also building roads, installing lighting, and placing cameras along the wall to further enhance security.
The progress on the wall is especially impressive given the astonishing level of resistance to securing the border. Congressional Democrats were so adamant that the border should not be secured that they were willing to partially shut down the government, leaving many of their supporters in the bureaucracy unpaid for more than a month.
Because President Trump stood by his guns, in 2018, $1.6 billion that Congress passed in 2018 for replacing existing fencing with new steel barriers and the $1.375 billion in 2019 for more steel barriers that was approved after the shutdown. And whatever Trump couldn’t get from Congress, he is getting from his national emergency declaration, reprogramming $5.6 billion from other Defense and Homeland Security funds to build the wall.
Even with tens of thousands of people streaming over the border each month, some Congressional Democrats absurdly tried claiming that there was no crisis at the border. Many Congressional obstructionists, along with their donors, are motivated by the prospect of gaining new voters or cheap, exploitable labor. So while they would have you believe they are acting out of compassion for illegal immigrants, they are actually being quite cynical.
Just a few years ago, senior Democrats agreed that securing the border and building a border wall was prudent; now, they support open borders and call anyone who wishes to secure the border a “racist.” Some even denounce Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for attempting to enforce laws passed by Congress. Democrat officeholders have gone so far left on immigration that even senior Obama administration officials, such as Eric Holder and Jeh Johnson, have warned them that they have gone too far.
On the progress on the construction of the border wall, Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning stated the following, “ALG commends President Trump for continuing to fight against overwhelming odds to keep his promise to build the wall. Despite the efforts of Congressional obstructionists to keep our borders open to drug cartels and human traffickers, progress on the wall is finally being made.” Manning went on to say, “If the obstructionists in Congress truly cared about their constituents, they’d put aside their narrow interests and join President Trump in securing our border.”
The left has done virtually everything it can think of to prevent President Trump from securing our border, but they are failing. While a border wall, by itself, will not end illegal immigration, it is a key component of securing our border. The President deserves a lot of credit for fighting so hard to secure our border and for putting the interests of American workers and taxpayers first. Lesser presidents, at the urging of their donors and the liberal media, would have retreated on this issue long ago.
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Richard McCarty is the Director of Research at Americans for Limited Government Foundation.