A GOP lawmaker says President-elect Donald TrumpDonald TrumpRussian official: Obama undermined USA democracy, not Moscow Five reasons intel community believes Russian Federation interfered in election Ex-CIA director: Trump's comments will lead to "wave" of resignations MORE's vow to have Mexico pay for a wall on the southern border was a "gimmick".
His tweet came as congressional Republicans and his top aides consider a plan to ask Congress to ensure money is available in the US budget for the wall without passing any new legislation.
The potential approach was confirmed by two congressional officials and a senior transition official with knowledge of the discussions; all spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly. Some Republicans always considered Trump's wall promise a gimmick, while others say they would be "disappointed" if Trump didn't make Mexico pay for the wall.
Instead of placing the economic burden on American families (estimated at $25 Billion, without including yearly maintenance costs), we ask that Donald Trump use his vast economic resources to finance the construction of the wall, and arrange for Mexico to pay him back directly. Trump added. "It's going to be a serious wall, it's going to be a great wall - it's not going to be a wall that they just climb up". But during a CNN appearance Friday morning, Trump surrogate Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY) expressed confidence Trump will ultimately be able to strong-arm the Mexican government into ponying up. He urged listeners to "just remember - and you remember I said it. Mexico is going to pay for the wall". Suggestions that he's breaking his promise are "not true".
Then, during a town hall hosted by Sean Hannity in February 2016, Trump said, "we're going to build a wall and it's going to be a serious wall".
"Congress is examining ways", Conway added, "to have the wall paid for through their auspices". She said Congress was "taking it on themselves to explore different options to pay for the wall", and voiced no objections.
It's not clear how much could be done along the 2,000-mile border without additional actions by Congress.
The President-elect has been seeking for the needed funding for his promise, which amounts to multibillions of dollars, from a contract that allegedly been signed in 2006 by former President George W. Bush. It allows building physical barriers along 700 miles of the 2000-mile-long border.
"It would be a proposal that would cost billions of dollars to get done, but if it's an appropriate priority for our country, it's worth spending that kind of money", said Republican Congressman Luke Messer of Indiana State and chairman of the House Republican Policy Committee. The New York Times reports Republican lawmakers are looking into funding the border wall with taxpayer money.
If funding tied to the construction could be tied to the Congressional appropriations process, as media reports suggest, Democrats could be forced to approve it in order to avoid a government shutdown.