Aug 24, 2020 - Politics & Policy

House panel demands documents from DHS related to Bannon wall project

Steve Bannon
Steve Bannon. Photo: Stephanie Keith/Getty Images

House Homeland Security chairman Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Monday demanding that the agency turn over documents related to its interactions with the "We Build the Wall" campaign, whose founding members were indicted for fraud last week.

Why it matters: Thompson notes that Brian Kolfage, the group's president, tweeted on several occasions that the project to privately fund a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border had been "approved" and "endorsed" by DHS and Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

  • Kris Kobach, a member of the organization's board, "claimed at least three times during 2019 that President Trump approved of the group's border wall projects," Thompson adds.
  • Since the arrest of former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, Trump has attempted to distance himself from the project, claiming he did not know much about it.

What they're saying: "On November 20, 2019, you and U.S. Border Patrol El Paso Sector Chief Gloria Chavez praised We Build the Wall’s New Mexico project at a press event," Thompson writes in the letter addressed to acting DHS secretary Chad Wolf.

  • "Chief Chavez touted the privately built, half-mile barrier as a “game changer” and 'very effective.' Chief Chavez also described specific technical capabilities included as part of the project," Thompson continues.

Read the letter.

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