“I would build a great wall, and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me, and I’ll build them very inexpensively — I will build a great, great wall on our southern border. And I will have Mexico pay for that wall. Mark my words.” – President Donald Trump during his 2016 campaign.
Some of the things the Trump for President campaign advocated were states’ rights and stopping federal overspending. How can anyone disagree with those principles?
Sadly, however, they have gone back on their word and have pushed forward a proposal to build a wall with massive federal spending that will infringe on the rights of millions of Americans.
This EO (Executive Order: Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/01/25/executive-order-border-security-and-immigration-enforcement-improvements) has yet to have any funding mechanism approved through Congress, but the rumours swirling are upwards of the $12 to $15 billion range to fund the building of the 1,000 to 2,000 mile long wall and massive detention centers Trump envisions.
The pundits are claiming that the wall will be closer to the $40 billion range and may not even be possible due to private land ownership along the border.
Most people haven’t thought about that aspect yet, but that is why I am here.
The Federal government, as with State and Local, have the right to eminent domain. This has allowed the government to tear up entire neighborhoods for large projects, like the interstate system. Sometimes this is needed and an important part of creating a better United States. Sometimes governments overstep their bounds and enforce eminent domain because a local mayor has opposition they wish to pester. This is why we have a court system, to check to make sure the Govt is not overstepping their bounds and to balance things out if they are.
Along the US-Mexican border you have thousands of private homeowners, when Bush built a 700 mile long wall it affected nearly 500 homeowners, many having to give up their entire properties, some of which had been in their family for hundreds of years.
It is estimated that there are thousands of private homeowners along the Texas- Mexico border alone, not including the massive Native American reservations in the Southwest. In order to complete construction of this wall the federal government will have to come in and seize the private property of thousands of US citizens.
There are some Americans who think a wall is a good idea and many who think it is a waste of money. The GOP likes to talk about using churches and charity instead of things like Social Security, Food Stamps and Welfare, so why not put their money where their mouth is?
If a border wall is so important to GOP voters, GOP Congressmen and our GOP President, why not collect the money and pay for it themselves?
The border runs along 4 states; California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. If they want a wall they should pay for it, the good people of Hawaii, Alaska or Maine have no need for a border wall with Mexico, why should they pay for it?
Trump has repeatedly made the claims that Mexico will pay for the wall, and Mexico has responded with a profound ‘no.’ So, Trump has brought up an idea of a 20% tariff on Mexican goods, which includes many vehicles, automotive parts, clothing, foods and much more. What happens when a tariff gets enacted? The consumer ends up covering the costs.
Okay, so we have a 20% tax on US consumers of Mexican goods and that will pay for the wall. Again, not sure why ALL Americans should cover the costs for a wall that affects 4 states. Many argue that illegal immigration is a bad thing and hurts states all over the US, but that has not been the experience of most northerners I know.
Most, including the leaders of many northern states, would argue that illegal immigration has a direct benefit on the state as they pay income taxes, receive very little to no benefits and often times do jobs that would be left vacant without them.
Trump is a big supporter of states’ rights, and so am I! It is one thing, maybe the only thing, we share in common. I would like to see him put his money where his mouth is and let the states decide. If Vermont, Maine, Alaska or Hawaii see no value in a borderwall with Mexico they should get to vote ‘no’ and not pay a penny towards the wall. If the states like Virginia, Louisiana, Florida, New Mexico or Alabama want that border wall, then cough up some dough and pay for it. Simple as that.
If and when a border wall with Canada is needed, then we can go the same route and have the states that want it front the cash while the states that don’t can save their money for better uses.