Donald Trump descended the staircase at his Trump Towers in New York City in July 2015 to declare his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination. He was the first and most vocal of the 17 GOP candidates to promise he would faithfully enforce all immigration laws while pledging to also build a wall along the entire U.S.-Mexico border, as a way of reducing human and drug smuggling and trafficking.
No sooner than he was inaugurated, the 45th president signed executive orders directing border authorities under the Department of Homeland Security to enforce immigration law as written, which is already having a dramatic effect on reducing illegal crossings.
Now, Trump is moving on his campaign pledge to build the border wall. According to a filing by the administration at the Federal Business Opportunities web site, DHS is soliciting contractors to come up with “several prototype wall structures in the vicinity of the United States border with Mexico.” (RELATED: Police illegally detain, assault, and stun woman with TASER at domestic checkpoint)
Additionally, according to the filing announcement, “procurement will be conducted in two phases, the first requiring vendors to submit a concept paper of their prototype(s) by March 10, 2017, which will result in the evaluation and down select of offerors by March 20, 2017. The second phase will require the down select of phase 1 offerors to submit proposals in response to the full RFP by March 24, 2017, which will include price.”
The administration says it expects to make “multiple awards” to contractors by mid-April, meaning the White House is moving quickly on the president’s pledge.
While Trump’s border wall has been controversial since he proposed it, the fact is there are already sections of the U.S.-Mexico border that have been secured with walls and two-tiered fencing. And while Border Patrol officials note that nothing is 100 percent effective, sectors that include structurally sound barriers see far less illegal border crossings and drug trafficking. (Related: Keep current with developments in with border security.)
And there is this: In 2006 the GOP-controlled Congress and President George W. Bush passed legislation known as the Secure Fence Act, which called for the construction of a border fence all along the 2,500-plus mile border. At the time Bush said, “This bill will help protect the American people. This bill will make our borders more secure. It is an important step toward immigration reform.”
Construction of the fence began but when Democrats took over the House in 2007, they defunded the measure; even though the law was on the books, without appropriating the funds, the fence could not be built.
So Trump’s challenge is two-fold: Convincing enough members of the GOP-controlled Congress to honor the intentions of a former Republican Congress and president, and then provide the funding for the new wall – which Trump still says Mexico will eventually pay for.
As reported by The National Sentinel, Trump telegraphed the government’s solicitation for the border fence during his speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, D.C. last week when he said construction would begin “soon.” (RELATED: ISIS Terrorist To Feds: ‘I Have Jihadist Brothers In Mexico’)
“It’s going to start soon. Way ahead of schedule, way ahead of schedule,” he said.
A spokesman for Customs and Border Protection told Reuters, “Once we get feedback from the vendors, we’ll look at the ones that are most feasible.”
Trump signed his executive order Jan. 21 to begin the process of building the wall – the day after his inauguration. It is estimated to cost around $21 billion, which is higher than the president has said in the past. But given his negotiating chops, I’m confident of two things – the end price will be less, and Mexicans will have paid for it one way or another.
The thing is, a majority of Americans favor Trump’s efforts to enforce immigration law, despite the onslaught of negative media coverage in the mainstream media. In addition, most Americans also support deportations of those living in the U.S. illegally and they overwhelmingly oppose “sanctuary cities,” which provide aid and comfort to illegal aliens, shielding them from federal immigration authorities.
J. D. Heyes is a senior writer for NaturalNews.com and Newstarget.com, and founding editor of The National Sentinel.