Tough choice for Trump if Congress refuses border wall financing
By Amanda Becker and Susan Cornwell5 hrs ago
President Donald Trump is unlikely to win congressional support for funds he wants for a proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall before an Oct. 1 deadline, meaning he may have to choose between backing down on a key campaign promise or shutting down the government.
The second option was a politically dangerous one before Hurricane Harvey tore through southern Texas over the weekend and it now looks even riskier.
At a campaign-style rally in Phoenix last week, Trump doubled down on his earlier demands that Congress fund a Mexican border wall in government spending legislation, adding a clear threat. "If we have to close down our government, we’re building that wall," he told supporters.
Since then, lawmakers who were already struggling to hammer out a stop-gap federal spending bill before Oct. 1 to avoid a shutdown have had to factor in Trump's threat as well.
During his election campaign, Trump insisted Mexico would pay for the construction of the wall, which experts said could cost about $22 billion and take more than three years to complete.
With Mexico refusing to pay, Trump has said since taking office in January that the wall will initially need U.S. funding but that he will find a way to make Mexico ultimately pay for it.
A government shutdown would result if Congress is unable to agree on a spending deal or if Trump does not like the package and vetoes it. A veto would put Trump in a dangerous position of rejecting a bill approved by his own party.
"Shutting down the government would be a self-destructive act, not to mention an act of political malpractice," Republican Representative Charlie Dent said in an interview.
Republicans firmly control the House of Representatives, but have only a narrow majority in the Senate, where at least eight Democratic votes will be needed to pass a spending bill.
Democratic leaders firmly oppose the border wall and appear to be in no mood to do Trump a favour by including funding now.
"Democrats aren’t feeling the heat over this,” Democratic strategist Jim Manley said, adding that “no Democrat is going to be cowed” by Trump’s threat to shut down the government.
Without Democratic support, current and former congressional aides from both parties said they expected Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, who has been sharply criticized by Trump in recent weeks, to opt for a spending bill without wall funding to get legislation to the president’s desk.
Dent said he expected the Senate would "strip out" $1.6 billion that had been set aside to start building the wall in a spending measure already passed by the House, and send it back to that chamber for another vote.
Dent voted for the wall funding the first time but said he would approve the spending measure without the wall money if that is what it takes to keep the government open.
Asked what Congress would do if Trump vetoes a spending bill, Dent said: "We'll have to determine what our next steps will be, but I’m hopeful he’ll sign the bill.”
A stop-gap spending bill would keep the government open for several months with no major changes to spending programs while lawmakers work out a longer-term deal. The U.S. Congress has relied heavily on those short-term fixes - known as continuing resolutions - for many years.
Federal assistance for those affected by devastating floods triggered by Harvey could be attached to a new continuing resolution.
But Trump said on Monday the hurricane recovery effort had not caused him to reconsider the option of a government shutdown.
"I think it has nothing to do with it, really. I think this is separate," he said at a news conference.
He said he hoped a government shutdown would not be needed but declined to rule it out. "If it’s necessary, we’ll have to see.”
If Trump signs a short-term extension without wall funding, it could delay the battle until December, when that legislation would likely expire.
Trump also said on Monday that the border wall was "imperative" in order to tackle drug trafficking and crime as well as illegal immigration.
The budget debate is also complicated by the need to finance support for victims of Harvey, the worst storm to hit Texas in more than 50 years, and find a deal on increasing the federal debt ceiling, which limits how much money the U.S. government can borrow.
One possible escape route for Trump could be separate legislation for funding the wall. John Cornyn, the No. 2 Republican in the Senate, has introduced legislation that would authorize $15 billion over four years for border security. That would still need the support of at least eight Senate Democrats.
(Additional reporting by David Morgan; Editing by Kevin Drawbaugh and Peter Cooney)
Cut off the $320,000,000 in aid we send Mexico the wall would be paid for in a couple of years. Tax the money sent to mexico via Western Union at 2% and the wall would be paid for in a couple of years. Just need politicians with balls enough to do it.
The following articles are related. The overarching subject is illegal immigration and highlights the NEED for the Trump border wall. Ideologically the first article is from the right while the second articles highlights the real consequences and the genuine, fundamental concerns of the left. Try not to be too surprised when you realize that the left is MOST concerned about; a) money and b) money from the government.
There has been much rhetoric from the left and the open-borders, pro-illegal immigration lobby suggesting that illegal immigrants pose no threat to the safety and security of this nation and commit less crimes than their American Citizen and legal immigrant counterparts.
If one watches the network newscasts, the ideologues and open-borders surrogates consistently accuse Americans and law enforcement experts who suggest otherwise of being racist and anti-immigration xenophobes. If you pay attention to the rhetoric, you will find one blaring item missing - facts.
I am a former Spanish speaking career detective who investigated violent crimes within the Hispanic and other ethnic immigrant communities.
I am also a forensic criminologist who is a subject matter expert in violent crime who advocates for facts and evidence. Here are some verified crime facts and statistics with you so that you will know the truth about the precarious relationship between violent crime and illegal immigrants.
As Americans, we should only care about three things: (1) are the immigrants in the U.S. illegally; (2) have they committed violent crimes predominantly against U.S. citizens; and (3) had these criminals not been in our country illegally, these crimes, the victimization of our citizens and the costs of their crimes borne by American taxpayers could have been completely avoided.
Previous administrations have deliberately kept Americans in the dark about illegal immigrant crimes
Most states and our federal government have kept information and statistics about illegal immigration, crimes committed by illegals and the costs borne by you the U.S. payer out of public view. It is in fact difficult, but not impossible to locate accurate crime statistics involving illegal immigrants. The statistics are buried both to suit a political agenda and to avoid public outcry. Once you read this article, you will quickly understand why.
Demographics - The Pew Research Institute estimates that as of 2014, there are at least 11.2 million illegal immigrants residing in the U.S. This population comprises approximately 3.5 percent of our country's population.
Of these, by far the largest ethnic population, 52 percent are Hispanics comprised of Mexicans, Central Americans and Cubans.
Six states: California, Texas, Illinois, Florida, New York and New Jersey account for 59 percent of all illegal immigrants residing in the U.S. The fact that 66 percent of all illegal immigrants have lived in our nation for over ten years underscores our long-standing inability to address the serious problem of our inability to control our nation's borders.
The relationship between illegal immigrants and violent crime
Research conducted by the federal government oversight organization Judicial Watch in 2014 documents that 50 percent of all federal crimes were committed near our border with Mexico.
Of the 61,529 criminal cases filed by federal prosecutors; 40 percent or 24,746 were in court districts along the southern borders of California, Arizona and Texas.
The Western District of Texas had the nation's most significant crime rate with over 6,300 cases filed; followed by the Southern District of Texas with slightly over 6,000 cases.
The Southern California District with nearly 4,900 cases; New Mexico with nearly 4,000 cases and Arizona with over 3,500 criminal cases ranked 3rd, 4th and 5th.
The U.S. Department of Justice documents that in 2014, 19 percent or over 12,000 criminal cases filed by prosecutors were for violent crimes; and over 22 percent or 13,300 cases were for drug related felonies.
That same year, the U.S. Sentencing Commission found that 75 percent of all criminal defendants who were convicted and sentenced for federal drug offenses were illegal immigrants. Illegal immigrants were also involved in 17 percent of all drug trafficking sentences and one third of all federal prison sentences.
The U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Sentencing Commission reported that as of 2014, illegal immigrants were convicted and sentenced for over 13 percent of all crimes committed in the U.S.
According to the FBI, 67,642 murders were committed in the U.S. from 2005 through 2008, and 115,717 from 2003 through 2009. The General Accounting Office documents that criminal immigrants committed 25,064 of these murders.
To extrapolate out these statistics, this means that a population of just over 3.5 percent residing in the U.S. unlawfully committed 22 percent to 37 percent of all murders in the nation. This is astounding.
Illegal immigrants clearly commit a level of violent and drug related crimes disproportionate to their population
Vetted crime statistics from USDOJ, the U.S. Sentencing Commission and the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) are both clear and demonstrative that illegal immigrants who comprise only 3.5 percent of our nation's population, are convicted and sentenced for the crime of murder at a rate of three times that of their American citizen and legal immigrant counterparts.
In California alone, over 2,400 illegal immigrants out of a total prison population of 130,000 are imprisoned in the state's prison system for the crime of homicide.
The misrepresentation of comparisons in who commits crimes between illegal immigrants, legal U.S. immigrants and American citizens
The pro-illegal immigrant lobby consistently misrepresents the criminal involvement of illegal immigrants as compared to immigrants who legally enter the U.S. and American citizens, saying that illegal immigrants commit less crimes than their counterparts. This assertion is false in most cases. Here are the vetted statistics:
In California, there are just over 92 illegal immigrants imprisoned for every 100,000 illegals as compared to 74 citizens and legal non-citizen immigrants. In Arizona, the rate is nearly 69 illegals imprisoned for every 100,000, as compared to 54 citizens and legal non-citizen immigrants.
In New York, over three times as many illegal immigrants or 169, are imprisoned for crimes per 100,000, as compared to only 48 citizens and legal non-citizen immigrants. Only the states of Texas and Florida do illegal immigrants commit less crimes than their legal immigrant counterparts (Texas with 54.5 illegals imprisoned per 100,000, compared to 65 legal immigrants and Florida with 55 illegals imprisoned, compared to 68 legal immigrants).
Texas is an epicenter for illegal immigrant crimes
Recent crime analysis by both the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Texas law enforcement authorities indicate that between June 2011 and March 2017, over 217,000 criminal immigrants were arrested and booked into Texas jails.
In researching the criminal careers of these defendants, it was revealed that they had jointly committed over nearly 600,000 criminal offenses. Their arrests included nearly 1,200 homicides; almost 69,000 assaults; 16,854 burglaries; 700 kidnappings; nearly 6,200 sexual assaults; 69,000 drug offenses; 8,700 weapons violations; over 3,800 robberies and over 45,000 obstructing police charges. In determining the status of these offenders in the U.S., it was confirmed by DHS that over 173,000 or 66 percent of these immigrant criminal defendants were in our country illegally at the times of their arrests.
"Sanctuary State" California politicians fight against deporting criminal illegal immigrants
Currently, a fight is brewing between California Open Borders politicians and the state's Democratic controlled Legislature and the Department of Justice regarding the protection of violent criminal illegal immigrants.
Hardly any Californian's know that in 2014, Gov. Brown signed a bill that amended a state statute amending the maximum sentencing for misdemeanor crimes by one day from 365 to 364 days in jail. This was deliberately done to avoid current federal laws that provide for the deportation of illegal and legal immigrants in this country who have received sentences of 365 days or more.
With the newly enacted jail and prison diversion programs of Propositions 109 and 47, Gov. Brown and company are effectively preventing the federal government from removing violent and recidivist illegal immigrants from our midst through the deportation process.
The extreme costs of keeping illegal immigrant criminals in this country
According to research and statistics by the U.S. Departments of Justice and Homeland Security, U.S. taxpayers are footing an annual bill of nearly $19 million a day to house and care for an estimated 300,000 to 450,000 convicted criminal immigrants who are eligible for deportation and are currently residing in local jails and state and federal prisons across the country.
These figures include not only those immigrants who are in the U.S. illegally, but all immigrants here who commit and have been convicted of crimes. Other accounting estimates indicate that the total cost for all corrections, medical and support services for adults and juvenile immigrant criminals nationally to be over $1.8 billion dollars.
So the next time you hear some Open Borders politician or pro illegal immigrant surrogates advocate on their behalf, ask yourself why we as American citizens need to bear the increasing costs of violence, victimization and burdensome taxes in subsidizing illegal immigrant criminals who shouldn't be in our country in the first place.
Ron Martinelli is a nationally renowned forensic criminologist and law enforcement expert. Martinelli is a retired San Jose (CA) police detective who provides forensic investigation and expert services to numerous states, large municipalities and national private law firms specializing in civil rights. He is fluent in Spanish and divides his time between California, Texas and Mexico.
Despite a boost in police numbers, Chicago, Illinois has recorded its 500th homicide for the year, with 11 people killed and more than 30 wounded in shooting incidents over the weekend.
Among those killed was a pregnant woman, and two people who lived on the same block, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Four people were killed in Brighton Park on Friday as they traveled in a car, police said, adding that the latest bloodshed resulted from an ongoing gang war in the Southwest Side neighborhood.
The neighborhoods of Brighton Park and Back of the Yards have been the scene of dozens of rifle shootings since early 2016. In February, rival gangs were reported to have stepped up their use of assault rifles.
Last year was the most violent in Chicago in decades, with many residents using the nickname "Chiraq" to compare it to Middle Eastern war zones.
In the first four months of 2017, more than 1,000 people were shot and nearly 200 homicides were reported in Chicago. Last year was the most violent in Chicago for the past 20 years, reaching 500 homicides by late August.
Over 2,700 people were shot in Chicago this year, a more than 11 percent decrease from the 3,066 shot during the same time last year, according to Tribune data. So far, the number of homicides is down about 7 percent from this time last year, according to the Tribune. The city of 2.7 million still has the second-highest violent crime rate in the US.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel, a Democrat, announced Sunday that nearly 100 new Chicago police officers have hit the streets, according to WBN-TV.
Nearly two dozen are to be stationed in Englewood on the South Side, which has a predominately African American population (93 percent) and some of the city's poorest housing and inadequate services.
Emanuel said the new officers are part of an effort to increase the police presence while taking "kids, guns and gangs off the streets."
"The Englewood community is one of the toughest, and they're leading in the decline in the city and we want to see that in every neighborhood," the mayor said in a statement.
Emanuel touted a 45 percent decline in shootings in the neighborhood in the past year, including a 30 percent decrease in homicides.
City officials plan to add an additional 1,000 officers to the force over the next two years. Police have seized more than 5,000 guns from the city's streets this year.
Mayor Emanuel's plan may be affected by an ongoing lawsuit filed by Chicago against the Department of Justice, however. Chicago sued the DOJ after Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced in July that "sanctuary cities" would not receive law enforcement funding from the DOJ. Chicago expected $3.2 million in grants.
A Chicago judge filed an injunction against the DOJ policy on Friday, preventing it from going into effect until the lawsuit is decided. Chicago refuses to comply with federal demands to help immigration authorities detain and deport illegal immigrants.
A report in 2013 said most of Chicago's violent crime came from gangs trying to maintain control of drug-selling territories, and specifically related to the activities of Mexico's Sinaloa Cartel, which was working to control illicit drug distribution against local street gangs, according to Bloomberg.
Violence in Chicago is often hyped by the media, Grammy-nominated rapper Vic Mensa told RT's Larry King last month.
"Violence in Chicago is often sensationalized and it's turned into a headline. It is used for the benefit of people in the media and people in power. It is looked at very one dimensionally without observing the factors that have created this violence," Mensa told King. "The fact that you can live your entire life in Lincoln Park, Chicago and not hear a gunshot, but be in a different neighborhood and hear gunshots every night."
The tally for the number of homicides is also in dispute. The Chicago Tribune keeps a running tally and said the weekend's death toll took the year's total past 500, whereas the Chicago Police Department said the number was 486. The Tribune counts all homicides, including those counted as justifiable.
I haven't seen any mention in this thread about the miles and miles of coastline that are unprotected. A small boat could circumvent the border and they could come ashore easily in California. And what if they make it to Canada? and just walk across the border. It is obvious we need a wall along the west coast and Canadian border too. But that still leaves the gulf coast vulnerable. Gee, who knew the wall was so complicated?
His 2017 budget called for money for replacing some outdated parts of the current wall, while his 2018 plan asked for $1.6 billion to erect 32 miles of new fencing in Texas, another 28 miles of new levee wall, also in Texas, and 14 miles of replacement fencing in San Diego.
The House has approved the money but the Senate has yet to take up the bill, and Democrats have announced they will try to derail any legislation that includes border wall money.
There is enough money in the current 2017 budget to pay for the prototypes
Those walls look good nice smooth concrete, excellent for playing handball if they plan on paving the area also. Mebe hold some IHF handball championships there to pay for the wall? Just thinking out loud.
Border Wall Prototype Construction near Otay Mesa Port of Entry okrajoe
Published on Oct 8, 2017
Wall Prototype Construction. HD Video by Charles Csavossy | Visual Communications Division | 10.04.2017 -- Construction crews begin building prototype models of the proposed wall along the Southwest border between the United States and Mexico. The construction site is located near the Otay Mesa Port of Entry in San Diego, CA.
$50 million/mile seems like a lot. That's $1 million / 100 foot section. The Berlin wall was just concrete over rebarb and stood for 40 years no problem. You set the rebarb sideways, lay the concrete and then put the wall vertically in position. Companies are building 2 story buildings with circumferences 5 times this distance for less than a 100 foot section is costing. I know it's a government contract so it will be inefficient but even if we double the cost for that reason, I would think it would be 1/3rd of the cost they are asking for.
Published on Oct 14, 2017
Video by Charles Csavossy U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Public Affairs - Visual Communications Division
Construction crews continue building prototype models of the proposed wall along the Southwest border between the United States and Mexico. The construction site is located near the Otay Mesa Port of Entry in San Diego, CA. Date taken: October 11, 2017
Published on Oct 14, 2017
Video by Charles Csavossy U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Public Affairs - Visual Communications Division
Construction crews continue building prototype models of the proposed wall along the Southwest border between the United States and Mexico. The construction site is located near the Otay Mesa Port of Entry in San Diego, CA. Date taken: October 10, 2017