Trump said he wants the U.S. to use “the most efficient way” to build a wall along the border with Mexico, saying the cost is not the issue.
The president’s remarks were at a meeting of the National Governors Association in Washington, D.C., where he was flanked by a delegation of governors who represent the nation’s border states.
He said the cost of building a wall is not a barrier to trade, noting that the cost to build it is less than the cost it would take to build an infrastructure program for border communities.
Trump also said the border would be “much more secure” and said that the wall would be built in “a very efficient way.”
Trump said it would be a “good thing” if Mexico paid for the wall, and he noted that Mexico already pays for some of the costs, including for the border wall itself.
“Mexico’s already paid for some,” he said.
“If they want to pay for it, that’s their problem.
It’s not ours.”
The president also made it clear that he wants Mexico to pay.
“They’re not paying for the fence.
They’re not building it.
And they’re not even paying for what we’re going to build,” Trump said.
Trump said the costs for building the wall are much higher than for building a fence.
He pointed to a report by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office that said construction costs for the new wall would amount to $2.7 billion to $3.3 billion.
The border wall, which Trump said is “going to be done very quickly” after Mexico and the United States negotiate a trade deal, is not expected to be complete until the second half of 2021.
Mexico and Washington have long been at odds over the wall.
The two countries have clashed repeatedly over the cost and timeline for building it, and Trump has said he will not pay for the project without a deal.
Trump has also called on Congress to approve his border wall in exchange for a massive increase in border security funding.
The White House has been lobbying lawmakers for more than a year to fund the wall and build it in a way that would make it easier for the U:p.
to enforce immigration laws.
Trump, who has previously expressed support for building and maintaining the wall at a cost of $20 billion to build, said he would like to build the wall by the end of the year.
“I will tell you, the last two years have been an absolute disaster.
But I will say this: I’m going to do something very, very soon.
We’re going fast.
We’ve got to do it,” Trump told the governors.
He added that Mexico would “pay for it.”