Tired of waiting for the federal government, a private group called “We Build the Wall” constructed a segment of a border wall in New Mexico on private land.
The half-mile section in the El Paso area was unveiled over the weekend.
“We’re closing a gap that’s been a big headache for them,” said Kris Kobach, former Kansas secretary of state and general counsel for We Build the Wall.
The 18-foot wall is similar to the construction designs used by the Border Patrol. The group said the project went up faster and cost less money than the similar project undertaken by the federal government.
According to Kobach, the half-mile section typically saw roughly 100 migrants and $100,000 worth of drugs pass through on a typical night.
The barrier is reportedly being constructed close to the Mount Cristo Rey statue near the Texas-New Mexico state line across from Mexico. The El Paso Times reported the land is owned by American Eagle Brick Co., whose owner, Jeff Allen, confirmed the construction. He told the publication that anyone who is against the construction is “against America.”
Kobach said the barrier isn’t made with the “run-of-the-mill” steel the government uses, which needs to be replaced every 25 years. Instead, the group used “all-weathering” steel that lasts three times as long, he said.
The construction started the same day a federal judge blocked the Trump administration’s efforts to build his long-promised wall with funds that were not appropriated by Congress but instead were shifted from other departments, including the military. (Texas Tribune)
The group posted a video of the construction on its Facebook page with the caption, “We did it!!!”
Money for the project has been raised on GoFundMe, bringing in more than $22 million so far from 265,000 pledges. The group’s campaign goal is set at $1 billion.