Border Wall

Contents
Recent
  • Trump’s Incomplete Border Wall Is in Pieces That Could Linger for Decades, NYT
  • Trump’s Border Wall: Where Does It Stand? Factcheck
  • Trump’s border wall was a complete waste of time and money, WaPo Editorial Dec 25, 2020
  • Report by Office of Inspector General of DHS, July 2020, dhs.org
Issue

Should the US build, or continue building, a wall on the Southern border to help prevent undocumented immigrants, narcotics, terrorists, and WMDs from entering the country?

Big Picture
US Customs and Border Protection
cbp.gov
  • CBP’s mission is to prevent
  • CBP secures the border
    • At ports of entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations
    • Along U.S. borders by agents from the Office of Border Patrol
    • From the air and sea by agents from the Office of Air and Marine Operations.
  • CBP’s Current Methods
    • Surveillance systems, inspections and searches at ports of entry, border patrols, surveillance aircraft, coastal interceptor boats, canine units, fences, lighting, cameras, sensors
Arguments for Building a Wall
Crisis on the Southern Border
  • Argument
    • There is a growing humanitarian and security crisis at our southern border
    • Trump’s oval office speech 1/8/2019
  • Objection
    • There’s no growing security crisis at our southern border
      • Apprehensions of people trying to cross the southern border peaked most recently at 1.6 million in 2000 and have been in decline since, falling to just under 400,000 in fiscal 2018. There are far more cases of travelers overstaying their visas than southern border apprehensions.
Illegal drugs
Crime by illegal aliens
Wall will pay for itself
Terrorists at the border
Effectiveness of a wall
  • Argument
    • In El Paso … it was one of the most dangerous cities in the country. A wall was put up. It went from being one of the most dangerous cities in the country to one of the safest cities in the country overnight. Overnight. Does that tell you something?
    • Trump 1/14/2019
  • Objection
  • Factcheck.org
Arguments against Building a Wall
Ineffectiveness of a wall
Costs
Conclusion
  • The proposed wall along the Southern border would be ineffective in preventing people, drugs, terrorists, and WMDs from illegally entering the US.
  • Funds for a wall would be better spent on
    • Expanding CBP’s current methods
    • Developing new technologies
Inspector General’s Report, July 2020

Report by Office of Inspector General of DHS, July 2020
CBP Has Not Demonstrated Acquisition Capabilities Needed to Secure the Southern Border

  • CBP Did Not Conduct an Analysis of Alternatives to Assess All Possible Alternatives to Secure the Southern Border
    • Although directed to do so by Congress and the Department, CBP did not conduct an AoA [Analysis of Alternatives] to assess and select the most effective, appropriate, and affordable solutions to obtain operational control of the southern border.
    • Specifically, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017, as well as subsequent appropriations, required the Department submit … a risk-based plan for improving security along the borders of the United States, including the use of personnel, fencing, other forms of tactical infrastructure, and technology.
Addenda