President Donald Trump will travel to California next month on a cross-country trek that will include a visit to eight prototypes for his proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall, a White House official confirmed Tuesday.
The Washington Post first reported the news.
The Trump administration has formally asked Congress for $18 billion in wall funding. The president’s immigration overhaul framework proposed a trust fund totaling $25 billion that would include the wall construction monies and be allotted in one lump sum — but as part of a broader immigration deal that has so far eluded lawmakers and the White House.
With the Supreme Court on Monday opting not to expedite a legal case about Trump’s order to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program that shields nearly 700,000 undocumented people from deportation, a March 5 deadline to pass a DACA-addressing immigration bill is now moot.
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That means Trump’s proposed border wall project is also now in limbo — which casts doubt on his ability to fulfill a major campaign pledge to his base as the midterm election season heats up.
In his signature fashion, Trump on Friday told a conservative audience not to worry about whether he will ultimately get the border barrier built.
“Don’t worry, you’re getting the wall,” he said at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference outside Washington. “Don’t worry, OK? ... We’re getting the wall.”
The audience, which he at time whipped into a frenzy during his meandering remarks, responded with a chant that helped define his 2016 campaign: “Build that wall! Build that wall! Build that wall!”
Trump then jabbed at “a couple of these characters in the back,” appearing to call out media members, saying, “‘Oh, he really doesn’t want the wall. He just used that for campaigning.’”
“Can you believe it?” he asked rhetorically with a twisted facial expression. “You know, I say, every time I hear that, the wall gets 10 feet higher. You know that, right? Every time. Every single time.”