By Todd A. Gillman / Dallas News
The budget plan the White House rolled out Thursday morning includes $4.1 billion for a border wall through next year — and no mechanism to follow through on President Donald Trump’s signature campaign promise to force Mexico to cough up the money.
The plan falls far short on promises to dramatically expand the ranks of Border Patrol and immigration enforcement agents. But it does call for 20 new Justice Department attorneys to work on scooping up border land for the wall through purchases and, presumably, eminent domain.
The president is asking Congress for $1.5 billion toward the wall for the remainder of this year and $2.6 billion in fiscal 2018.
“It’s all that we think that we can spend this year,” White House budget director Mick Mulvaney told reporters Wednesday. “The next question is going to be how many miles of wall does that build. We don’t know the answer to that question because we haven’t settled on construction types. We haven’t settled on where we’re going to start.”