There have been eight border wall prototypes to decrease illegal immigration across the Mexican-American border. Although illegal immigration is down 41% since President Trump took office, it will have a factor of intimidation once you see all eight. On then-candidate Trump’s campaign trail, he insisted he would build a border wall with Mexico paying for it, but Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto reaffirmed in a leaked phone call between the two. But if Mexico won’t pay for it and neither will the US because it would add to the national deficit, then what would the option be?
Congress cannot pay for it as it would clearly derail the yearly spending budget for the fiscal year. In August, however, the House approved a spending Bill of $1.6B that would go towards that wall, but since then has stalled in the Senate because Senate Republicans do not want to have a repeat of a government shutdown that occurred during the Obama presidency in 2013. President Trump could possibly use laws designed to block money-laundering from Mexican workers employed in the US wire-transferring money back to Mexico. The catch is the sector: $25B a year. What could happen after is to tax the remittance if one cannot prove legal status in the United States, likely to be deported.
Increasing tourist/work visas and border crossing fees
While this wouldn’t bring the fastest revenue towards the wall budget, the United States Border Patrol could also take into account overstayed visas. When one overstays a visa (in this case, 42% of undocumented aliens have overstayed visas) they can charge a fee to that person until that certain alien has paid the charge back.
Increasing trade tariffs
Back in late January of 2017, President Trump’s then-Spokesman, Sean Spicer, said if the US increased the trade tariff on imports by 20%, that would bring $10B a year for the US. Although Mexico could look the other direction if this is the case, a compromise of the tariff becoming 10% and “existing duties” could be doubled in order to continue gaining revenue.
As the price of solar panels have decreased drastically over 8 years, this would be a cost-effective add on to the border wall. From 2008, one watt would cost $8.00. This year, it costs less than $1.50 per watt. While racking up a tally of more than $250M, it would be paid back in under 20 years and would continue to collect profit.
Using confiscated drug money
When Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman was extradited to the United States, he was asked to hand over $14B that he earned while running a multi-billion dollar drug federation. At the Mexican-American border in 2016, there was an estimated $8.7B confiscated, according to the Justice Department’s annual audit. A University of Pittsburg study from three years ago found that the Mexican cartels are profiting to the tune of some $25 to $30 billion dollars annually from drugs alone.
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Jorge Velasco is a Political Analyst at Nova News Breaking and theDailyWire.