Build the wall and make drug traffickers pay for it — Democrats and Republicans should support this

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So the president has said he’s willing to make a deal: if Democrats will support real, permanent border security, remove incentives for future illegal immigration, and modernize our immigration system, the roughly 700,000 DACA recipients can receive legal status so they no longer have to live in limbo.

President Trump’s position is very reasonable – so it’s puzzling that Washington Democrats have so far refused this deal. After all, they supported many of these same measures just a few years ago.

Here’s one potential solution we could consider: it’s estimated that billions upon billions of dollars a year are moved across the border by drug traffickers laundering their cash. Money is the primary motivation for selling drugs, and a root cause of our nation’s opioid epidemic. But even now, the federal government intercepts only a tiny fraction of that money.

If agencies like Customs and Border Protection, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Treasury improved their information sharing, leveraged big data and ramped up apprehension efforts, we may be able to seize billions of dollars from drug traffickers, strike a major blow against the illicit opioid supply, and fully pay for construction of the wall and additional border security measures.

Together, these are all proposals that would protect Americans and make our country stronger. They just make sense. Perhaps that’s why countries like Canada and Australia already have merit-based immigration systems, which welcome newcomers who can be productive members of society and help grow our economy with skills that are in demand.- READ MORE

President Donald Trump will ask Congress for approximately $25 billion for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, he told reporters late Wednesday.

“We have $25 billion for a wall, we have $5 billion for other security measures,” Trump said of a legislative framework the White House will release for the Senate’s consideration Monday. “If you build a wall for $20 or $22 billion, and you’re saving $100 billion, that wall….that wall is a great return on investment.”

“I’m gonna build it way under budget,” the president vowed. – READ MORE

The Trump administration is waiving more than 30 environmental rules to accelerate the construction of President Trump’s proposed border wall in New Mexico, forcing environmental groups to consider another round of lawsuits.

The Department of Homeland Security published a notice Monday that said the waiver was necessary to ensure the “expeditious construction of barriers” near the Santa Teresa Land Port of Entry.

“The Secretary of Homeland Security has determined, pursuant to law, that it is necessary to waive certain laws, regulations and other legal requirements in order to ensure the expeditious construction of barriers and roads in the vicinity of the international land border of the United States,” according to a notice published in the Federal Register.

The waiver included rules and requirements under several top federal environmental rules, including the National Environmental Policy Act, the Endangered Species Act, the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, the National Historic Preservation Act, the Clean Air Act, the Archaeological Resources Protection Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the Noise Control Act. – READ MORE

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