by: Joshua Drake, Staff
Prologue: Backdrop. Thousands of people cheering at a rally, and a red hat on stage yelling: “We are going to build a wall! And Mexico is going to pay for it!”
While running for the office of president, Donald Trump promised a “big, beautiful” wall to ensure what he claimed as the safety of all American people. However, now a year in–Mexico has refused to pay, and Congress has not appropriated funds for the wall.
A polarized debate over DACA, immigration reform, and a funding source for the wall is currently held up on failing votes in the Senate. Looming in the background is another legal issue.
The U.S.-Mexico border is an expansive 1,933 miles, which poses serious geographical and property law issues for the Trump administration. Almost 5,000 parcels of land are in the direct path of the border wall, which will require the U.S. government to seize via eminent domain.
In 2006, President George W. Bush implemented Public Law 109-367, a border fence project. That border fence had encroached on private land and required government seizure. Today, the U.S. government is still suing private citizens over the taking of their land from the 2006 law.
President Trump’s wall is not immune to litigation and may even be prone to it. In late 2017, Cards Against Humanity, a viral card-game company, surprisingly bought a parcel of land on the U.S.-Mexico border in an attempt to delay the Trump administration’s progress.
Whether his advisors have informed him of the eventual pitfalls of much of the wall’s funding going toward potential litigation is unclear, however, President Trump continues to talk about funding the wall to this day, resonating with his base.
President Trump’s end game is unclear, but time is running out for him to secure border-wall funding from Congress or whether through his artful trolling of Mexico. “But if you don’t deliver the goods, people will eventually catch on…” Eventually people do catch on, though, Mr. President.