Rep. Peters Strongly Opposes Trump Administration Request for $18 Billion in Funding for Border Wall
January 4, 2018
Today, U.S. Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52) voiced strong opposition to the Trump Administration’s request for $18 billion over the next decade to expand the United States’ southwest border wall. If granted, the funding would expand the existing border barrier by more than 700 miles.
“In a selfish political appeal to his base, and on the heels of tax cuts that will cost the country $150 trillion, Donald Trump wants to waste another $18 billion of taxpayer money on a wall that most Americans oppose and that won’t secure the border as well as other more innovative, less expensive technology,” said Rep. Scott Peters.
“I visited San Diego’s existing border fence with local Border Patrol recently, and they said what we need most is technology to detect underground tunnels used to smuggle drugs and people,” Peters said.
“Let’s focus on the real problems without wasting billions on an edifice this President swore the U.S. wouldn’t pay for,” he added.
San Diego is the busiest border crossing in the world. Peters, along with most San Diegans, views the border as an opportunity, not a threat, since the southern border is an economic engine for San Diego and our country.
“When it comes to border security, we need to prioritize halting drug and human trafficking and national security threats with new and up-to-date tactics,” Peters said, adding money would be better spent modernizing new threat detection technology, additional surveillance towers, camera systems, grounds sensors, helicopters, planes, and ships.
Peters also supports better technology and an increased number of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) personnel to more quickly and thoroughly clear legal cargo through customs while better detecting contraband.
Recently, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill, with Peters’ support, that would authorize funding for technology to help CBP catch people attempting to smuggle illegal drugs, particularly fentanyl, which is the most recent opioid to strike the San Diego community.
Further funding is needed for ports of entry near San Diego. For example, Calexico West is still in need of $248 million.