Democrats Can Fund the World, but Not the Wall

Wednesday, January 9, 2019
By Paul Martin

By Brian C. Joondeph
January 9, 2019

There is nothing like a government shutdown to illustrate clearly the priorities of the two opposing sides to the standoff. On one side is President Trump, keeping a campaign promise to build a wall, to keep crime, sex-trafficking, drugs, and terrorism, not to mention the unfunded burden of illegal aliens, out of America.

On the other side are the Democrats, hell-bent on keeping 25 percent of the government closed for business rather than funding border security, a concept they wholeheartedly supported a decade ago.

Who’s winning and who’s losing the battle? If you watch cable news, it’s clear that the president is on the ropes, having backed himself into a corner. Reality sings a different tune. How did we get here?

Donald Trump, announcing his candidacy for president in June 2015, rode down the escalator at Trump Tower and said, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best.” He went on, “They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

These were among his first pronouncements that day and have been a constant theme of his rallies and tweets since then – including this tweet from a few days ago.

Democrats were once in favor of border security, too. Many, including Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer, voted for the Secure Fence Act of 2006. This provided for, “Operational control over the entire international land and maritime borders of the United States.”

Now, because it’s 2019 and Trump is president, Democrats are conveniently against border security. This is a common theme of Democrats, frequently for something before they are against it. Remember John Kerry and the Iraq War?

The current fight is over a mere $5 billion in funding for a wall – or a “fence” if the term “wall” is offensive, but a physical barrier between two nations, controlling who and what traipses from one country to the other. The federal budget is $4.4 trillion, meaning wall funding represents about a tenth of a percent of the budget, a rounding error. What else are Nancy Pelosi and colleagues spending money on? How about foreign aid?

The 2019 federal budget requests nearly $27 billion in foreign aid for economic development, health, humanitarian assistance, peace and security, and other objectives. This is over half the cost of securing “[t]he entire international land and maritime borders of the United States” something Democrats were keen about in 2006.

The Secure Fence Act of 2006 budgeted $50 billion over 25 years to control America’s borders. Unfortunately, Congress appropriated only $1.4 billion and forgot about the rest. The foreign aid request above was for one single year. Two years of the foreign aid budget spent instead on U.S. border security would create the type of physical borders so common in the countries we are generously supporting.

Fund the world, but not America.

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