Over two years of funding disappointments for Trump’s signature campaign promise has left voters desperately trying to pick up the tab Mexico wouldn’t, while Trump turns to making ultimatums.
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A GoFundMe account started by a military veteran has raised over $ 1.6mn within two days of its launch, which, while impressive, remains a far cry from the $ 5bn mark Trump told congress he would need to complete construction. The campaign was initiated by Brian Kolfage, who is a triple amputee, a Purple Heart Recipient and a motivational speaker.
“I have grandparents who immigrated to America legally, they did it the correct way and it’s time we uphold our laws, and get this wall BUILT! It’s up to Americans to help out and pitch in to get this project rolling”, Kolfage wrote on the campaign’s page, We The People Will Fund The Wall. Trump, meanwhile, appeared to maintain that it’s Mexico that has to pay – and already is paying, “indirectly.”
Mexico is paying (indirectly) for the Wall through the new USMCA, the replacement for NAFTA! Far more money coming to the U.S. Because of the tremendous dangers at the Border, including large scale criminal and drug inflow, the United States Military will build the Wall!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 19, 2018
The question of funding has become imperative, as Trump himself made very evident during last week’s debate where he threatened an emergency shut-down of the government if his $ 5bn dollar funding request was not approved, “indirect funding” aside. Despite the ultimatum, the President has been unable to drum up the support he needs on the floor to get the payment approved.
At the same time, the State Department announced a $ 10bn aid package to Mexico and Central America – to the chagrin of many a Trump supporter.
In fairness to Trump, maybe we misheard him in 2016. Maybe he said the southern border needed a big, beautiful mall.
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) December 19, 2018
Trump’s “big and beautiful wall” remains one of the central promises of his campaign in the eyes of many Republicans – who see every day without a brick laid on the southern border as a reminder of the administration’s failure to deliver. Prominent conservative commentator Ann Coulter went as far as to suggest this failure will cost Trump his second term – or even the rest of the first one.
Those who are not ready to jump ship just yet are instead pushing the president to press the attack and even veto the government funding bill if it doesn’t allocate money to the wall.
With all of these upsets and delays, crowd funding might seem like a good bet for those who want the wall to go up – but imposes drawbacks of its own. Aside from the obvious point of the imposing price-tag, GoFundMe itself does not even allow users to set goals of over a billion dollars, although Kolfage says he is trying to work with the company to get them to raise the cap.
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