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Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:05 PM

In Letter To Congress, Trump Says He Won't Compromise On Physical Wall

Source: Talking Points Memo


By Nicole Lafond
January 4, 2019 12:00 pm

In a letter sent to members of Congress on Friday, President Trump again made demands for funding for a physical wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, calling the need for a tangible barrier “absolutely critical” and suggesting Democrats’ opposition to the wall is hypocritical.


“Absolutely critical to border security and national security is a wall or a physical barrier that prevents entry in the first place,” he wrote. “Members of both parties—including then Senators Obama and Clinton, current Senator Schumer, and many other members of the House and Senate—all voted for a hard, physical barrier. Walls work. That’s why rich, powerful, and successful people build them around their homes. All Americans deserve the same protection. In Israel, it is 99 percent effective.”

Trump attached a slide show presentation from Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen — the same presentation she made to lawmakers earlier this week — and cast veiled criticism at Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) for not wanting “to hear the presentation at the time.”

“It had been my hope that Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen would have the opportunity to deliver a presentation discussing the facts about the depth and severity of the humanitarian crisis and the security crisis that is now unfolding at the Southern Border,” he wrote. “However, some of those present did not want to hear the presentation at the time, and so I have instead decided to make the presentation available to all Members of Congress.”

Read more: https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/letter-congress-trump-no-compromise-physical-wall



January 4, 2019
Dear Members of Congress:

Congratulations to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and her entire team, on her election to be Speaker of the House. I look forward to working together on our shared priorities for the American People, including rebuilding our infrastructure, reforming unfair trade deals, and reducing the price of prescription drugs. Our recent bipartisan success on numerous legislative accomplishments such as Criminal Justice Reform, opioid legislation, and the Farm Bill, underscores the extraordinary achievements that are possible when we rise above party politics to advance the good of the Nation as a whole.

As we begin this new Congress, our first task should be to reopen the Government and to deliver on our highest duty as elected officials: the security of the Nation and its borders.

It is the sovereign right of every nation to establish an immigration program in its national interest—lawfully admitting those who have followed the rules, while denying entry to those who break the rules or fail to meet the requirements established in law.

A nation that fails to control its borders cannot fulfill its most basic obligations to its citizens—physical safety, economic security, essential public services, and the uniform protection of our laws.

I was grateful for the opportunity to meet with Congressional leadership at the White House this Wednesday to discuss the border security crisis, and the need for a government funding bill that secures the border and keeps Americans safe.

During the meeting, there was debate over the nature and extent of this crisis and its impact on Americans. It had been my hope that Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen would have the opportunity to deliver a presentation discussing the facts about the depth and severity of the humanitarian crisis and the security crisis that is now unfolding at the Southern Border.

However, some of those present did not want to hear the presentation at the time, and so I have instead decided to make the presentation available to all Members of Congress. I encourage you to review it carefully, to share it with your staff, and to discuss it with other lawmakers. In crafting a Homeland Security bill, it is essential that we make decisions based upon the facts on the ground—not ideology and rhetoric—and that we listen to the law enforcement personnel on the front lines. The Southern Border is a very dangerous place—in fact, Border Patrol agents routinely encounter some of the most dangerous criminals, cartels, and traffickers anywhere in the world.

Effective border security must dramatically reduce the entry of illegal immigrants, criminals, and drugs; it must keep out terrorists, public safety threats, and those otherwise inadmissible under U.S. law; and it must ensure that those who do enter without legal permission can be promptly and safely returned home.

As the enclosed presentation makes clear, current funding levels, resources, and authorities are woefully inadequate to meet the scope of the problem. We are no longer in a status quo situation at the Southern Border but in a crisis situation. Status quo funding is not enough.

In fiscal year (FY) 2018, 17,000 adults at the border with existing criminal records were arrested by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and border agents.

In FY2017 and FY2018, ICE officers arrested approximately 235,000 aliens on various criminal charges or convictions within the interior of the United States—including roughly 100,000 for assault, 30,000 for sex crimes, and 4,000 for homicides.

We are now averaging 60,000 illegal and inadmissible aliens a month on our Southern Border.

Last month alone, more than 20,000 minors were smuggled into the United States.

The immigration court backlog is nearly 800,000 cases.

There has been a 2,000 percent increase in asylum claims over the last five years, with the largest growth coming from Central America—while around 9 in 10 claims from Central American migrants are ultimately rejected by the immigration courts, the applicant has long since been released into the interior of the United States.

In FY2017, roughly 135,000 illegal and inadmissible family units arrived from Central America. Of those, less than 2 percent have been successfully removed from the country due to a shortage of resources and glaring loopholes in our federal laws.

So far in FY2019, we have seen a 280 percent increase in family units from FY2018.

300 Americans are killed every week from heroin—90 percent of which floods across our Southern Border.

Illegal immigration is a humanitarian crisis: 1 in 3 migrant women is sexually assaulted on the journey northward to the U.S. border; 50 illegal migrants a day are referred for emergency medical care; and CBP rescues 4,300 people a year who are in danger and distress.


Illegal immigration is NOT progressive—by every measure, it is unfair, unjust, uncompassionate, and cruel. Many people are killed. It hurts both those who make the journey and so many communities bearing the cost in lives, safety, and dollars.

Senator Chuck Schumer once said: “Illegal immigration is wrong, plain and simple. Until the American people are convinced that we will stop future flows of illegal immigration, we will make no progress on dealing with the millions of illegal immigrants who are here now, and on rationalizing our system of legal immigration. That’s plain and simple and unavoidable.”

Absolutely critical to border security and national security is a wall or a physical barrier that prevents entry in the first place. Members of both parties—including then Senators Obama and Clinton, current Senator Schumer, and many other members of the House and Senate—all voted for a hard, physical barrier. Walls work. That’s why rich, powerful, and successful people build them around their homes. All Americans deserve the same protection. In Israel, it is 99 percent effective.
We must also close the legal gaps in America’s defenses. Loopholes in federal law that prevent removals provide a magnet for illegal entry, and a lucrative business model for vicious coyotes, while overwhelming the U.S. immigration system. The worst loopholes incentivize the smuggling of minors. Under these legal loopholes, if an illegal minor, or those traveling with a minor, merely set foot on United States soil, they cannot be successfully returned home. This explains the profound increases in the arrival of minors travelling both alone and with adults on the dangerous journey to our border.

To protect these children from abuse, and stop this illegal flow, we must close these loopholes. This is an urgent humanitarian necessity. Children are terribly used by criminals and coyotes to gain access to our country—they are the biggest victims of all.

The most pressing legal changes are as follows:

Terminate the Flores Settlement Agreement—which is preventing families from being held together through removal; and

Amend the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA), to allow for the safe and humane return of illegally-smuggled minors back to their families in their home countries.


Americans have endured decades of broken promises on illegal immigration. Now, is the time for both parties to rise above the partisan discord, to set aside political convenience, and to put the national interest first. Now is the time—this is the moment—to finally secure the border and create the lawful and safe immigration system Americans, and those wanting to become Americans, deserve.

Sincerely,
DONALD J. TRUMP
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Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply In Letter To Congress, Trump Says He Won't Compromise On Physical Wall (Original post)
DonViejo Jan 4 OP
beachbum bob Jan 4 #1
Quemado Jan 4 #4
klook Jan 4 #2
NoMoreRepugs Jan 4 #3
cp Jan 4 #5
louis c Jan 4 #6
catbyte Jan 4 #17
CloudWatcher Jan 4 #7
Major Nikon Jan 4 #10
louis c Jan 4 #11
Major Nikon Jan 4 #20
apnu Jan 4 #14
Major Nikon Jan 4 #21
apnu Jan 4 #23
Major Nikon Jan 4 #24
Ccarmona Jan 4 #8
Democrats_win Jan 4 #9
TexasBushwhacker Jan 4 #13
LakeSuperiorView Jan 4 #18
NCjack Jan 4 #12
sinkingfeeling Jan 4 #15
sinkingfeeling Jan 4 #16
oberliner Jan 4 #19
Bernardo de La Paz Jan 4 #22

Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:06 PM

1. making GOP and McConnel sweat is always awesome....they own the shutdown as much as

trump does

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Response to beachbum bob (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:11 PM

4. +1

Trump and McConnell own the shutdown. Trump laid claim to it on December 11. McConnell picked up co-ownership when he said he won't bring the House's bill to the Senate floor for a vote.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:09 PM

2. I thought we had a prohibition on "kooky, extremist, or hate content."

JK, anything from Trump breaks that rule.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:09 PM

3. I will wait until these "statistics" are fact checked before commenting. Some seem a bit dubious.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:11 PM

5. Won't compromise, but will paint himself into corner

Agent Orange owns the shutdown, as does Yertle, who is not doing his Constitutionally mandated job if he kowtows to 45 instead of passing legislation. Co-equal branches of government.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:11 PM

6. Letter to President* Donald J. Trump

Dear Mr. Trump,

Go Fuck Yourself

Louis C.

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Response to louis c (Reply #6)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 02:30 PM

17. Please add my name to your letter.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:11 PM

7. veto override

I think the GOP votes are there if a vote for an override comes up. But how can they get around turtle if he doesn't want to let it come to a vote? Is there a procedure short of removing him from the leadership position? I.e. if the GOP senators finally get some sense and flee from this insanity?

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Response to CloudWatcher (Reply #7)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:24 PM

10. This is the same wall Trump couldn't manage to get with a GOP House and a bigger Senate majority

Only a dipshit bluffs with even a weaker hand than he's already lost with, especially after going on TV admitting he owned the shutdown as if anyone else can be blamed. The longest shutdown in history lasted 3 weeks. Even Faux has the shutdown clock. With every tick Trump's position gets weaker. It's like playing chicken with a tractor trailer against a moped.

Soon you're going to start to see very pissed off federal workers picketing airports and other public places and the news media is going to start showing more stories of people being forced to work without pay. The political fallout is going to hit the GOP like a ton of bricks.

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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #10)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:30 PM

11. Senate Republican Majority was smaller last year...

...but I get your point.

Rep 51 Senators then, 53 Now.

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Response to louis c (Reply #11)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 04:09 PM

20. Yes, sorry

I knew we picked up 2 seats, but missed how we lost 4

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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #10)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 02:12 PM

14. "The political fallout is going to hit the GOP like a ton of bricks." in 2020, maybe.

Never underestimate the GOP base. But you're right about swing voters, they will punish the GOP.

But GOP core voters? They'll stick to the GOP, and the party knows they have a roughly 1/3 floor of the electorate. The GOP panders to that crowd. Everybody who's going to abandon the GOP already has.

So if the national mood is dour on the GOP in 2020, they'll lose the White House and any competitive, purple House seats and states. But deep red districts and states? Nah, they'll stay, their base is that prideful, fearful, and stubborn. This is why Mitch McConnell keeps his job. Most of Kentucky's active voters will vote for him no matter how much McConnell is loathed nationally. They do it with pride to stick it to us libtards. We're never going to reach those people, we've been trying for decades and nothing's changed. We have to wait for them to die off, I hate to say, but its true. All we can do is wait them out, and try to get with the younger generations and drive them to the polls.

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Response to apnu (Reply #14)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 04:14 PM

21. I never underestimate the stupidity of the GOP base

However the shutdown is untenable for very much longer. You have hundreds of thousands of people who aren't getting paid, about half of which must still work. One of the two sides has to give or the consequences will be disastrous.

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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #21)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 06:04 PM

23. Agreed. But I think the R's have no leverage here.

Trump owned this shutdown before it started. McConnell is hiding, hoping in vane, the electorate blames Trump and the Dems. I don't see what leverage the GOP has over the Democrats. They are the only ones who have anything to lose. Now TSA agents are calling in sick, air travel is going to turn into a new kind of hell and the GOP is really gonna feel the heat.

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Response to apnu (Reply #23)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 06:35 PM

24. I agree

McConnell is following Trump right down the rabbit hole. TSA has already started calling in sick. DOT is also affected, so you're going to have ATC sick outs coming soon which is going to do a much bigger number on air travel. Prison guards are going to stop showing up. Trump just said today he's prepared to go a year or more. The man is completely off the chain. All Pelosi and Schumer have to do is wait for the inevitable train wreck, maybe quite literally. Someone is going to die over this, and maybe lots of someones.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:17 PM

8. Trump Didn't Write This Himself, It's too coherent

 

It’s McTurtle who is blocking these bills. Bring them up in the Senate, and it will pass with a veto proof majority. Then McTurtle can claim his members overruled. But there’s more to this, because McT is acting like he’s being blackmailed into staying lock-step with Individual-1.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:18 PM

9. He's getting kickbacks from the construction!

I know there isn't any evidence, but do you trust this lying crook?

Start the impeachment hearings NOW! Any organization, company or government cannot accept a lying crook in its midst let alone as its leader. Dump Trump NOW.

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Response to Democrats_win (Reply #9)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:58 PM

13. That's what I'm thinking too

He's lining his pockets somehow.

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Response to TexasBushwhacker (Reply #13)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 02:41 PM

18. Russia sells steel...

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 01:37 PM

12. He is working too hard for the Wall. Makes me think that he has taken Russian

advance money to lock in property development (inc. Trump Tower) where the Wall would cross the Rio Grande. He has probably spent the advance money, and that's a problem. Putin does not tolerate failure.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 02:17 PM

15. Wow, the total of 'illegal and inadmissible aliens' went up from 20,000 a month

at his cabinet meeting to 60,000. In just 2 days.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)


Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 02:44 PM

19. I wonder who wrote that

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Fri Jan 4, 2019, 04:39 PM

22. Trump desperate. Without his Wall, he's done nothing to run on except judges.


His tax cut? Exposed even to his base as a hoax by April at the latest.

Economy? Markets very volatile.

Inviting greedy megacorps into Parks and Monuments and drilling off coasts? Not much "populist" about that.

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