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Thu Jan 10, 2019, 08:36 AM

CATO Institute: Why the Wall Won't Work

Even the CATO Institute sees problems with the wall.

from 2017.

In 2009, the Homeland Security inspector general concluded that the Border Patrol had “achieved [its] progress primarily in areas where environmental and real estate issues did not cause significant delay.” One intransigent resident had owned his property since before the “Roosevelt easement,” which gives the federal government a 60-foot right of way along the border. He fought the administration, so the fence had until recently a 1.2-mile gap on his land. Border residents fought more than a third of all land transfers, in fact. Because the Constitution promises just compensation for takings, Trump can do little to speed this process.

Native American tribes also have the capacity to stop construction of barriers. The Tohono O’odham Nation, which has land on both sides of the border, has already pledged to fight any efforts to build a wall there. In 2007, when the tribe allowed vehicle barriers to be constructed, the Bush administration ended up desecrating Indian burial grounds and digging up human remains. The new president would need a stand-alone bill from Congress to condemn their land. Senate Democrats can (and likely would) filibuster such an effort.

Even federal lands can be problematic. In 2010, two-thirds of patrol agents-in-charge told the Government Accountability Office (GAO) that land management laws had delayed or limited access to portions of federal lands, for fence building or repairs and other purposes, with more than half stating they did not get a timely response when they requested permission to use the lands. In one case, it took nearly eight months for the Border Patrol to get the OK to install a single underground sensor.

Water rights have also been a problem for the fence. A 1970 treaty requires that the floodplain of the Rio Grande remain open to both sides of the border. The Obama administration attempted to build fences along the river anyway, but the treaty and the river’s floods forced the barrier to be placed so far into the interior of the United States that it has many holes to allow U.S. residents access to their property. These also provide an opportunity for border crossers.

At the same time, the fence can cause Mexico to receive too much water. Even when a fence has holes, which a wall would not, debris can turn the fence into a dam. Thanks to the barrier, some floods have fully covered the doors of Mexican buildings in Los Ebanos, across the Rio Grande, while producing little more than deep puddling on the U.S. side. The International Boundary and Water Commission that administers the treaty has rebuffed the Border Patrol’s attempts to replicate this disaster in other areas of the Rio Grande Valley.

If not over or through, some crossers may opt to go under. Tunnels are typically used more for drug smuggling, but they still create a significant vulnerability in any kind of physical barrier. From 2007 to 2010, the Border Patrol found more than one tunnel per month, on average. “For every tunnel we find, we feel they’re building another one somewhere,” Kevin Hecht, a Border Patrol tunnel expert, told The New York Times last year. A wall would likely increase the rewards for successful tunneling as other modes of transit grow more expensive.


This link is provided as the citation, not promoting RW sources or endorsing anything else on the website or by the CATO Institute.

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Reply CATO Institute: Why the Wall Won't Work (Original post)
ehrnst Jan 10 OP
C_U_L8R Jan 10 #1
cojoel Jan 10 #2
ehrnst Jan 10 #3
NewJeffCT Jan 10 #4

Response to ehrnst (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 08:52 AM

1. It doesn't take a thinktank

to figure out that Trump’s wall is stupid and ineffective.

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Response to ehrnst (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 10:18 AM

2. If your a Republican and you lose the Koch brothers

your deal probably isn't going very far...

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Response to cojoel (Reply #2)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 10:21 AM

3. This is a delicious thing to share on FB with a RWer screaming about 'the only people

saying that the wall won't work are Democrats because they just want to obstruct Dear Leader.'

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