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  • Yvette Herrell

Border wall: Mile a day is way things should stay

Even in the midst of a pandemic and civil unrest, President Donald Trump continues to fulfill his signature promise at the impressive rate of around one mile per day.

Years of Democratic obstruction, legal challenges, logistical nightmares and even a worldwide pandemic cannot stop the president from building the wall across the border. As mile after mile of state-of-the-art fencing, surveillance equipment and infrastructure improvements are completed, Trump is steadily fulfilling the pledge that propelled him to the White House.

Recently, Trump himself was in Arizona to sign a plaque marking the 200th mile of new fencing completed under his administration. According to the latest U.S. Customs and Border Patrol estimates, 216 miles of the wall are now complete, with much of that fencing located along New Mexico’s own southern border.

An additional 339 miles of wall currently are under construction and moving quickly toward completion. With an average of seven miles per week being finished, the project is on track to meet Trump’s goal of 450 miles by the end of 2020 and eventually reach up to 738 miles of wall even without additional funding mechanisms.

For three years, the president’s detractors have tried to turn the border wall into a punchline — a quixotic endeavor with no chance of realization and a symbol of the folly of Trumpism — despite the fact many of the politicians denouncing his plans had supported similar border security construction in the past.

The joke is on them. The wall is going up — fast.

The wall’s true value, however, is not political but practical — its value lies in the tangible benefits it will provide for generations to come. In addition to creating a physical barrier that makes incursions by illegal immigrants, cartel drug smugglers and human traffickers significantly more difficult, the president’s border security initiatives include a high-tech surveillance network that helps Customs and Border Patrol agents monitor the border, as well as a vastly improved road network that makes it easier for law enforcement officers to deploy wherever they’re needed.

Border Patrol officers, who have been vocal advocates for the wall since long before Trump’s entry into office, are already reporting increased officer safety and decreased crime in sectors where improvements have been made.

Progress along the border is not inevitable, however. Joe Biden is running specifically on a pledge to defund and reverse Trump’s border security agenda. There’s absolutely no question that border security and the enforcement of our nation’s immigration laws will not be a priority under a Biden administration.

The former vice president has undertaken a massive flip-flop, going from setting deportation records during the Obama administration to promises that absolutely no one will be deported for entering or residing in the country illegally.

New Mexico can’t afford to give its electoral votes to Biden, who would sacrifice the success we’re making on the border to appease his Party’s increasingly radical base. A mile a day is the way things should stay.

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