President Donald Trump has long touted his proposed border wall between the United States and Mexico—which, of course, Mexico will pay for—as the silver bullet that will stem the tide of undocumented immigration into the country. Never mind that the wall is largely unfeasible, morally abhorrent, and outrageously expensive.
Well, this week, America finally got its first real taste of what that wall is going to cost taxpayers (because, of course, Mexico has no intention of shelling out a single peso). And, like most Trump promises, it's not looking good.
According to Department of Homeland Security documents obtained by CNN, the Trump administration is asking for nearly $1 billion to cover just 62 miles of the 2,000-mile-long border between the two countries. The requested $999 million will reportedly fund 14 miles of new wall and 14 miles of replacement wall in San Diego, as well as 28 miles of "levee wall barriers" and six miles of new wall in the Rio Grande Valley.
The DHS documents seem to directly fly in the face of Trump's proclamation that the total cost of his border wall would be just $12 billion. An internal review from department estimated a price tag in the neighborhood of $25 billion—although, even that number seems low, considering the $161 million-per-mile cost of this initial request.
While no hard timeline has been put forth regarding the wall's construction, Customs and Border Protection has begun seeking contractor proposals for what would likely be one of the largest infrastructure projects in U.S. history.