Trump has built only one mile of new border wall since being elected
Since taking office three years ago, Donald Trump has managed to build approximately 1 mile of new wall along the U.S.-Mexico border where no such structure previously existed.
Of the 121 miles of border wall the Trump administration has constructed, only 1 mile was "constructed in locations where no barriers previously existed," according to a fact sheet on the wall's status provided by Customs and Border Protection this week.
Further, the lone mile of new wall is not 1 continuous mile of new wall. It is a total of 1 mile broken up over "multiple locations." CBP did not respond to an email asking for the specific number of locations over which the structures are spread.
According to CBP's fact sheet, the Trump administration plans to build a total of 348 miles of new wall where no barrier previously existed. At the administration's current pace, that feat would take more than 1,000 years.
The CBP data sheet did note that construction has begun on an additional 13 miles of new wall where no previous barrier existed.
The remaining 120 miles of wall completed by the Trump administration were either "constructed in place of dilapidated and/or outdated designs" (110 miles) or part of a "new secondary border wall system" (10 miles).
In total, 99.2% of the wall built by the Trump administration is replacement of previous structures.
Despite the slow progress, Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, told Politico on Friday that the administration is on pace to build 450 miles of border wall "by the end of the year or early next year."
The border wall "was a promise, and it's important that it's now being accomplished," Kushner told Politico.
The border wall is in fact being paid for by a combination of appropriations to the Department of Homeland Security and funds Congress intended to go to the military.
During the 2016 campaign, Trump repeatedly promised that Mexico would pay for the a wall along the entire U.S-Mexico border. Instead, the Trump administration is now forcing taxpayers and military families to foot the bill.
Between 2019 and 2020, the Trump administration will take at least $7.2 billion meant for the military and put it toward the border wall. That money specifically comes from schools on military bases around the world and military base projects throughout the United States.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation. Attribution: Dan Desai Martin.