Donald Trump says Mexico to foot bill for wall
Washington,Jan 7:The US Congress is exploring ways to pay for a southern border wall, with payment to be sought from Mexico later.
President-elect Donald Trump made building a wall, paid for by the US neighbour, a central campaign pledge.
The businessman sparked a storm of disapproval in 2015 when he said Mexico was sending criminals and rapists north to the US through a porous border.
In a tweet on Friday, he lashed out at the “dishonest media” for saying taxpayers would foot the bill.
“Any money spent on building the Great Wall (for sake of speed), will be paid back by Mexico later!”
Mr Trump’s spokesman, Sean Spicer, insisted on Friday morning that the plan to seek reimbursement from Mexico after paying US money up-front “doesn’t mean he’s broken his promise”.
“I think he’s going to continue to talk to them (the Mexican government) about that,” he told ABC News.
Congressional Republicans confirmed they have the legal authorisation to build the wall under the Secure Fence Act passed by former president George W Bush in 2006.
But to ensure they have the funding, they may seek to add billions of dollars to the government’s spending bill – which needs to pass by 28 April to keep the federal government open.
Democrats may oppose that spending, risking a government shutdown.