Trump Checks Out New Border Fence

President Trump has had a chance to see the latest border fence design in action along the California/Mexico border in Calexico. Trump met with former Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan, border agents and local lawmakers.

President Trump landed Friday morning at the Naval Air Facility in El Centro then met invited guests at the El Centro Border Station. During a roundtable discussion Trump heard from border agents about the frustration of keeping up with the large number of illegal immigrants, regardless if they come as families from Central America or by themselves looking for work.

After the roundtable, the President went to the border fence just west of the Calexico/Mexicali Port of Entry.

Gloria Chavez, the Border Chief of the El Centro Sector, gave the President and invited guests a personal tour of the fence. Chavez told the President the new wall has significantly reduced the incidents of illegal crossings and, more importantly, made it safer for border agents to patrol the area. She said attacks against agents are way down because of the taller fence. It’s not unusual for agents to get hit by rocks, bricks and even balloons filled with dangerous chemicals, urine or feces.

Trump heard from various law enforcement representatives, some as far away as Fresno County. They told the President about the stress on local resources and the challenges of dealing with sanctuary policies.

The President told invited guests his plan to continue building the fence. He also said he’s not opposed to closing the border if Mexico backs off its commitment to stopping more caravans from Central America.

While the border tour was happening, more than 600 miles to the north in Sacramento, State Attorney General Xavier Becerra was announcing his lawsuit against Trump on behalf of California and 19 other states. The suit seeks to stop Trump from building the wall/fence using money set aside for drug interdictions, military construction projects and law enforcement.

He invited his guests to speak to the ‘Fake News’ and asked them to say a few words. Trump took some questions from pool reporters and White House correspondents. Trump shut down the Q&A after a reporter asked him about releasing his tax records.

Off-mic, Trump spoke to some agents one on one and some other law enforcement, which included chiefs of police and county sheriffs.

There were a few protesters and supporters on scene but they were kept pretty far away from the action. And, it was a peaceful gathering. Other than some chanting, it was pretty tame.

After the tour, President Trump boarded Air Force One and headed to Los Angeles for a fundraiser, then flew to Las Vegas where he stayed the night.

Photo: Steve Gregory

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