After former President Donald Trump tried to revise his ubiquitous claim that Mexico would pay for the border wall he proposed, Florida Republican Governor and 2024 hopeful Ron DeSantis criticized him in a post on X, formerly Twitter.
During a speech in Iowa, Trump asserted that he received more funding for the wall than Mexico had provided, referencing Mexico's commitment during his presidency to deploy thousands of troops to assist in preventing migrants from heading to the United States.
However, while defending his record and criticizing his detractors, Trump inaccurately described his pre-presidential promises regarding the wall's funding and claimed Mexico paying for "a piece of the wall" was never actually in the cards.
“So with all those losers out there that say – ‘Trump never got the –’ you remember, I used to say, ‘Mexico will pay for the piece of the wall.’”
“I’ll say, ‘What’s gonna happen if they [Mexico] fight,’ I say, ‘The wall gets higher.’ We all had a lot of fun. But I said, ‘Mexico will pay, for a piece of the wall.’"
"Well, there was no legal instrument to do that.”
Not long afterward, DeSantis seized on the first part of Trump's statement to suggest that Trump had not only lied but had openly insulted his own supporters:
"Trump says you’re a loser if you expected him to get Mexico to pay for 'a piece of the wall.'"
You can see what DeSantis said and hear Trump's remarks in the post below.
Many have called out Trump for lying and openly mocked his statements.
A growing number of Republicans have accused Trump of breaking his key campaign promise to make Mexico pay for the wall. Instead, the wall was funded with more than $16 billion in federal money allocated by the Trump administration.
During his 2016 campaign, Trump repeatedly pledged in public statements, without any qualifications, that Mexico would pay for the entire wall.
Trump's promise that Mexico would fully fund the wall was a central feature of his campaign rallies in 2015 and 2016. These promises often included a call-and-response interaction in which Trump would commit to building the wall and ask the audience who would bear the cost. The audience would respond with "Mexico," and Trump would confirm their response.
Even when Trump adjusted his rhetoric towards the end of the campaign, suggesting that Mexico would reimburse the United States for the wall's cost, he maintained that it would be a complete reimbursement.