The U.S. House of Representatives passed last-minute funding for President Donald Trump's border wall Thursday night after a contentious fight between Trump and Congressional leaders that threatens to shut down the government.
Every House Democrat along with eight House Republicans voted against the measure.
The $5.7 billion "border security" bill is expected to fail in the Senate. It is widely expected that the federal government will shut down Friday at midnight.
Freshman Congresswoman Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) slammed the passage of the bill, frustratingly asking on Twitter why no one is questioning where the money for a wall is coming from and noting several smarter possible uses for those funds.
"And just like that, GOP discovers $5.7 billion for a wall," Ocasio-Cortez wrote. "$5.7 billion. What if we instead added $5.7B in teacher pay? Or replacing water pipes? Or college tuition/prescription refill subsidies? Or green jobs? But notice how no one’s asking the GOP how they’re paying for it."
And just like that, GOP discovers $5.7 billion for a wall. $5.7 billion What if we instead added $5.7B in teacher… https://t.co/iuAquWqhkY— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez)1545356282.0
Ocasio-Cortez has a point. There is no evidence indicating that a border wall would translate into savings for American taxpayers. Trump often boasts that illegal immigration costs more than $100 billion - and even up to $275 billion - per year. These numbers - for which there is no corroborating evidence - are a figment of Trump's imagination.
And yet, without any data supporting the president's foggy figures, Republicans somehow managed to pony up the dough for a project the public does not even want, while our schools and roads crumble and millions are still in need of health care.
Where are our priorities as a country?
@Ocasio2018 Perhaps Mexico can pay the teachers now that they aren't paying for the wall? No, not remotely serious.— J (@J)1545392346.0
@Ocasio2018 Veteran, children's education, health care for seniors oh I forgot that's not IMPORTANT.— Paulette E. Jackson (@Paulette E. Jackson)1545395317.0
@Ocasio2018 The @GOP would rather placate the Toddler-In-Chief @realDonaldTrump than actually support programs & po… https://t.co/AFe6fqfPok— N.C. Progressive Movement (@N.C. Progressive Movement)1545401202.0
Trump campaigned for president with the promise of building a wall along the southern border and having Mexico pay for it.
@Ocasio2018 Did the House suddenly get renamed? Are they calling it “Mexico” now?— Kevin Salisbury (@Kevin Salisbury)1545399159.0
@axios Wait! Why does OUR House of Representatives have to come up with any money for this? Trump said Mexico is paying.— Ken Durbrow (@Ken Durbrow)1545357575.0
@axios Obviously the @GOP has no idea where MEXICO is, because they just made the wrong side of the border pay for their wall.— Michael Lewis (@Michael Lewis)1545358103.0
At the time, few on the Republican side asked how it would be feasible.
But Mexico is never going to pay, and with an incoming Democratic majority in the House, this is likely Trump's last chance to fulfill his biggest campaign pledge and hold on to his dwindling political base.
Last week, Trump said he would be "proud to shut down the government" over "border security," though he has since walked that pledge back.
On Twitter Friday morning, the president wagged his finger at Democrats, whom Trump strangely chided for "trying to belittle the concept of a wall."
The Democrats are trying to belittle the concept of a Wall, calling it old fashioned. The fact is there is nothing… https://t.co/AkrCIxTKeX— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1545393509.0
Trump claimed he "knows tech better than anyone" (he has never even used a computer) and said without evidence that a border wall would save "hundreds of billions."
.....on a Border is only effective in conjunction with a Wall. Properly designed and built Walls work, and the Demo… https://t.co/8J0SBmAILX— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1545394236.0
A few minutes later, Trump pinned the looming shutdown on the Democrats, despite Republicans still having control over the entire federal government.
Shutdown today if Democrats do not vote for Border Security!— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1545395495.0
@realDonaldTrump Erm, I distinctly remember you saying that the Mexicans are paying for the wall? Changed your mind… https://t.co/8vqQsuhXCe— Charles Moore (@Charles Moore)1545403175.0
@realDonaldTrump They will give you border security not 5 bills for a wall that Mexico is paying for show me the invoice billed to Mexico— Damian Davis (@Damian Davis)1545403524.0
People see right through Trump's charade.
@realDonaldTrump Tru https://t.co/J2kndDM30w— UFREAKINTOOL (@UFREAKINTOOL)1545402632.0
@realDonaldTrump https://t.co/bKaLD4shs2— banner boy (@banner boy)1545402663.0
@realDonaldTrump https://t.co/7qvj3O5nrC— Angelo Roma (@Angelo Roma)1545403258.0
@realDonaldTrump Those is shameful, negotiations vs threats would be the adult way here. Painfully obvious you do not have that ability.— Seth Larson (@Seth Larson)1545404093.0
@realDonaldTrump This folks is the real life grinch. Taking away pay from people who work for the government right… https://t.co/qiT6F87ASV— April Vogt (@April Vogt)1545403823.0
What a way to end the year.