Don't be surprised if it's not a wall
Mounted Border Patrol agents stand by as President Trump inspects border wall prototypes in San Diego in March. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images
The border wall is one of President Trump's best known campaign promises, and it's the reason we're in a partial government shutdown — but the Associated Press has a good roundup of comments by White House officials and allies that suggest it might end up being less than a complete physical wall between the U.S. and Mexico.
Between the lines: It's not surprising that Trump allies would float ideas to negotiate Trump's promise down to something he just calls a wall. But given how important Trump's promise is to his supporters, nothing will be resolved until Trump himself signs off on something less.
The key comments, per AP:
- White House chief of staff John Kelly, to the Los Angeles Times: Trump gave up on “a solid concrete wall early on in the administration.”
- White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, on Fox News Sunday: “There may be a wall in some places, there may be steel slats, there may be technological enhancements.”
- Sen. Lindsey Graham, to reporters after having lunch with Trump on Sunday: “The wall has become a metaphor for border security.” He said it could just be “a physical barrier along the border.”