Poll: We want a wall paid with pesos
If President Donald Trump can twist Mexico’s arm to help fund the wall, most Americans would support that, predicts Ira Mehlman of the Federation of American Immigration Reform, or FAIR.
“But the bottom line is, even if the American taxpayer does have to fund the wall,” says Mehlman, “it is still going to save a lot more not only in the long term but even in the short term.”
A recent Rasmussen survey found that 58 percent of likely U.S. voters suggest Mexico should pay a portion of the cost of a border wall. Twenty-two percent of those surveyed believe Mexico should foot the entire bill for the wall, and 36 percent say that Mexico shouldn’t pay at all.
In 2006, Congress authorized the construction of an extensive 700-mile, double-layered border fence. The Secure Fence Act passed in the House 283-138 and 80-19 in the Senate, with $1.2 billion allocated for the project.
Legislation to fund and finish the border fence has repeatedly died in Congress, and a call to continue the project was mentioned in the Republican Party’s 2012 party platform.
More than a decade later, Trump made the issues of illegal immigation and border enforcement – in particular a border wall – a key issue during his presidential campaign. He repeatedly promised that a wall will be constructed (see video below) and Mexico will help pay for it.
House Speaker Paul Ryan said in an interview last week that he didn’t rule out Mexico helping finance a wall but said the U.S. would likely “front the money.”
“The point is, [Trump] has a promise that he made to the American people to secure our border. A wall is a big part of that,” Ryan told Greta Van Susteren in the MSNBC interview. “We agree with that goal.”
Mehlman tells OneNewsNow that members of Congress who voted for the 2006 legislation include notable Democratic names Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, and Chuck Schumer.
“All of these people thought it was a good idea back in 2006,” he recalls. “I’m not quite sure what’s changed to make it a bad idea in 2017.”