Donald Trump tweeted a series of photos as he greeted the beginning of the construction of his long-promised boundary wall. "A great meeting this afternoon at the beginning of our southern border wall," he enthused on Wednesday.
Speaking in Ohio on Thursday, Trump called the building a "thing of beauty."
One problem: The building is not part of Trump's border wall. It is the replacement of a fence from the 1
U.S. Customs and Border Guard officials pointed out last month that the construction of Calexico had been planned for years, clarifying that it was not Trump's Wall.
David Kim, Border Patrol's Deputy Leader for the El Centro Sector, told The Desert Sun: "We just wanted to … let everyone know that this is a local tactical infrastructure project that had been planned for a long time." He said he wanted to make sure that "there is no confusion as to whether … that is related to some of the larger immigration debates that are taking place."
The Border Police identified the project as a priority in 2009, Kim said long before Trump's Wall proposed. Funding for the Calexico project – about $ 18 million – was provided last year, the Sun reported.
Calexico's mayor, Maritza Hurtado, told CNN: "This is not the start of a Trump government wall project. It is completely different. "A border barrier has existed there for decades."
A CNN panel debated the barrier on Thursday, and Stephen Moore, former chief economic adviser to the Trump campaign, said, "The Wall is being built, but they do not have enough money to to finish it. "Moderator Anderson Cooper replied," It's not being built. Where is the wall actually being built? … am I going crazy? Christine Quinn, former spokeswoman for the New York City Council, joked, "You can see a chicken as a penguin, but it's still a chicken. "
Trump received $ 1.6 billion for border projects this month in the new issue agreement, but did not include the money for wall construction." The Department of Homeland Security has estimated that a wall will cost at least $ 21.6 billion although other estimates are much higher.
USA Today has created an interactive map of the barriers that exist along the Mexican border, look at it