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Trump’s wall fight shifts to 2020 budget



THE United States House of Representatives, by a vote of 245-82 last February 26, approved legislation to terminate President Donald Trump’s declaration of an emergency at the US-Mexico border. Congress had earlier refused to approve $5.7 billion Trump wanted to build the wall to keep out Latin American immigrants. Trump’s counter-move was to declare an emer­gency that would allow him to divert funds already in the budget.

Trump hoped to divert $3.6 billion for Pentagon construction projects and other defense funds to his wall. But congressmen, both Democrats and Trump’s own Republicans, opposed the fund diversion move as it challenged the constitutional principle that it is Congress alone that decides where pub­lic funds are to be spent.

Frustrated anew by Congress’ action ending his declaration of an emer­gency, President Trump last week moved on to a new front in his fight. He announced a budget for next year, 2020, containing $8.6 billion for his wall.

This is the latest chapter of the saga of the border wall which President Trump first announced as a campaign issue in the presidential election of 2016. The wall is part of his general anti-immigration policies.

The American president today is in the middle of so many issues and con­troversies, including possible election offenses with unreported payments to a woman to keep her quiet, alleged collusion between his campaign staff and the Russians, alleged obstruction of justice in these probes.

Now, he may be facing impeachment for obstruction of justice in the on­going probe of his poll campaign, particularly in relation to Russian involve­ment. But he carries on his unrelenting fight for his wall, which may well become the hallmark of his administration.

We continue to follow this fight in hopes that we will learn from this ex­perience of our former colonial mentor which bequeathed to us the same system of democratic government that now have in our country.

We now have our own controversy in Congress over our reenacted nation­al budget, which remains undecided to this day. But nothing is quite as per­plexing as the wall issue that has so fiercely divided the American people.