The Pentagon rolled out Trump’s plans to pay for the border wall and it largely impacts the military
When Donald Trump ran for president, one of his biggest promises was to “build the wall” and make Mexico pay for it. Trump’s supporters seemed to think he’d make good on that promise, but on Wednesday, September 4, 2019 Defense Secretary Mark Esper announced that $3.6 billion in funds affecting 127 military projects would be delayed or suspended and diverted away to fund the border wall. The worst part is that most of the funds were meant to fund schools for US military families across the world.
According to the Pentagon, some of the projects that the wall is stealing from include $13 million for a “child development center” at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland — the home of Air Force One, $95 million for an elementary school at Camp McTureous in Japan, $80 million for an elementary school project in Spangdahlem Air Base in Germany, and $62 million for a middle school in Kentucky.
Mexico isn’t paying for Trump’s stupid border wall — we are. https://t.co/5pwZo0RDhJ
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) September 5, 2019
In addition to the schools, Puerto Rico lost $400 million in relief funding, the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York said goodbye to $95 million to build an engineering center, and Fort Huachuca in Arizona lost $30 million in funds for an equipment building.
Trump declared the immigration situation a national emergency back in February 2019 and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pointed out that it made little sense to take money away from the military if you truly believe we’re in a “national emergency.”
“My view of it is that stealing money from military construction, at home and abroad, will undermine our national security, quality of life and morale of our troops, and that indeed makes America less safe,” Pelosi said (via Vanity Fair).
Canceling military construction projects to pay for a wasteful border wall is yet another example of @realDonaldTrump putting his own vanity projects before the American people. His disregard for the brave men & women who serve our country is un-American & should infuriate us all
— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) September 4, 2019
“All these projects are important to us,” a Department of Defense official told reporters (via Politico). “But we also have to respond to the emergency that we’ve been directed to respond to on the southwest border.”
The DoD official also added that there’s “no guarantees” that these projects will ever get funded now.
The Pentagon is deferring $400 million in Hurricane Maria recovery projects in Puerto Rico so the funds can instead go toward construction of President Trump's border wall, a Defense Department list published Wednesday shows.https://t.co/uTi1ep4Wy7
— Bruno J. Navarro (@Bruno_J_Navarro) September 5, 2019
Clearly, Trump’s promise that Mexico would pay for the wall is bunk, but that doesn’t change the fact that people voted for him because they believed in that campaign promise. Politicians across the aisle have lamented the news, even Republicans like Mitt Romney, who said in a statement that he was ” disappointed” that “two key military construction projects totaling $54 million will be delayed as a result of the February 2019 emergency declaration.”
Unfortunately, Fox News hosts seemingly sided with the president, only stating that Trump “never should have said Mexico is going to pay for the wall.”
This snatch & grab heist by Donald Trump is unacceptable. Somehow he's gone from "Mexico will pay for the wall," to forcing the U.S. military to defer construction projects to pay for his wall. This is nothing more than a vanity project.https://t.co/5fFG4waB90
— Senator Jeff Merkley (@SenJeffMerkley) September 4, 2019
Head to MilitaryTimes.com for more information on which projects have been suspended to build the wall.