Trump Administration Wants $18 Billion to Build 'Big, Beautiful Wall'

Trump and Democrats Working on Deal Over Future of DACA Recipients Before Program Expires

Donald Trump insisted on Saturday that Mexico would pay for a wall along the southern USA border, one day after his administration asked Congress for $18bn over the next decade to start construction on the barrier. The $18 billion would expand the physical barrier on the US-Mexico border from its current 654 miles to almost 1,000 miles-about half of the total border.

Trump has demanded a border wall in exchange for passing legislation that would shield from deportation hundreds of thousands of young migrants brought to the United States as children, known as Dreamers.

The wish list was delivered to Congress Friday, and shockingly, is an exact copy of a list of policies Democrats called a "non-starter" in October during other efforts to strike a bipartisan immigration deal in order to protect DACA recipients, leading many to suspect that this latest Trump administration effort could also derail bipartisan discussions.

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Trump has promised "a big, lovely wall" with Mexico as a centerpiece of his presidency but offered few details of where it would be built, when and at what cost.

Trump is also asking for changes to the legal immigration system.

A built in delay gives congress until March to come up with a resolution.

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An administration official confirmed the document was prepared at the request of congressional negotiators and said funding for the wall and other security measures must be part of any legislative package on immigration.

If that work was completed, more than half of the almost 2,000 mile-border with Mexico would be lined with a physical barrier.

Mexico has steadfastly rejected Trump's demand that it pay for the wall and few doubt that USA taxpayers will foot the bill if the wall is built.

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President Trump this week asked Congress for $18-B to pay for the 1st phase of The Wall's construction.

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