Trump's promise that Mexico will pay for wall could be in trouble following budget proposal


The Trump administration released a preliminary 2018 budget proposal on Wednesday, and with it comes official details on how the new White House plans to pay for the controversial border wall.

According to the 2017 proposal, the wall will cost taxpayers $2 billion this year. The White House expects to spend $4.1 billion on the wall through 2018.

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Trump promised throughout the 2016 campaign that not only will a wall on the Mexican-American border be built, but that Mexico would pay for it. The campaign promise evolved into a rallying cry of Trump's campaign events, with then presidential candidate Trump often leading attendees in a call-and-response chant.

Click through images of the wall already along the US-Mexico border:

"Who's gonna pay for the wall?" Trump would ask before the crowd cheered "Mexico!"

Critics have already called Trump's new budget proposal the nail in the coffin for his border wall promise. However, the billionaire businessman's team has been pivoting since taking office regarding how Mexico will pay for the wall.

Calls for Mexico to pay for the wall have morphed into Mexico will reimburse America for the wall. Trump says that this pivot is out of urgency to get wall construction underway immediately.

"I don't feel like waiting a year or year and a half. We're going to start building. Mexico in some form and there are many different forms, will reimburse us and they will reimburse us for the cost of the wall. That will happen. Whether it's a tax or whether it's a payment," Trump said during a press conference back in January.

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Recently, Republican leaders have grown more outspoken against the idea that Mexico will front the wall bill. "Uh, no," said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell when asked if Mexico will pay for a southern border wall.

"I'm in favor of border security. There are probably some places along the border where that is probably not the best way to secure the border," McConnell added.

A Department of Homeland Security report estimated the cost of the wall would be $21.6 billion, far higher than the $12 billion estimate coming from Trump's team.

A Pew poll from February 2017 found 62 percent of Americans oppose building the wall and 35 favor the move.

InsideGov Graphiq