The Texas state capital takes a stand against Trump and one of his signature campaign promises – building a border wall with Mexico.
The City of Austin, Texas, has declared war on any business having anything to do with Trump’s border wall between Mexico and the USA.
Newsweek reported that “In a 10-1 vote, Austin City Council passed a resolution on [February 1, 2018] that prohibits the city from doing business with contractors employed to design, build, or maintain a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.”
“City residents deserve to know how the City’s public funds are being spent, and whether those funds are supporting individuals or entities involved in the construction or operation of the border wall,” argued the resolution. “The city council has a responsibility to expend taxpayer dollars in ways that are consistent with the long-standing values of this community.”
Local NBC affiliate KXAN reported that Austin Mayor Steve Adler, a Democrat, told reporters that: “This wall is not a way that we should be treating our friends.”
Council Member Sabino “Pio” Renteria is quoted as saying: “We have a shared history, and more importantly, we have a shared future. That is why we in Austin are interested in building economic bridges, not expensive walls.”
Democracy Now reported that: “Austin joins dozens of other cities that have moved to divest from border wall contractors. In response, Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke… accused cities of ‘blackballing’ companies, telling a crowd at the Border Security Expo in San Antonio the practice is something ‘we shouldn’t be tolerating.'”
The border wall is of particular importance in Texas, because, as it turns out, Trump supporters in the state are discovering that the joke is on them – because they will end up living in Mexico if Trump’s wall is built.
Raw Story reported that: “Trump supporters in Texas are coming to the realization that their vote for the president may force some of them out of their homes for less than they are worth, with others finding out that — if they stay — they’ll be living in Mexico if his wall is built.”
Newsweek published an article late last year regarding a report that was released by the Democratic staff of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
According to Newsweek:
The report claims Trump’s administration has not outlined how many U.S. citizen landowners will be affected by construction of the barrier, nor a timeline or costs for land seizure. “Despite the Administration’s request for an initial down payment of $1.6 billion to pay for 74 miles of wall construction and replacement fencing in Fiscal Year (FY) 2018, the Administration cannot provide the Committee with any definitive real estate costs or requirements, cannot tell the Committee how many American citizens will have their land seized, and has no timeline for completing land acquisition efforts necessary to build the wall that President Trump has ordered,” a release on the report stated.
The report also suggested that:
Complications with previous fence deployment efforts, and planned staffing increases at the Department of Justice and CBP illustrate a point that DHS itself has made: “Real estate acquisition for border fence construction is a very complex issue, particularly in Texas.”
Before spending billions of taxpayer dollars on the construction of a wall along the southwest border, CBP, DHS, and the President have an obligation to Congress – and to the American people – to address questions related to land acquisition that, to date, remain unanswered.
You can watch a video about the vote by KXAN, below, and although its title says the Austin City Council “considers” a boycott, the clip discusses the recent 10-1 vote creating the boycott.