Trump mulls TSA cuts to pay for border wall

Trump mulls TSA cuts to pay for border wall

U.S. President Donald Trump reportedly plans to cut the budget for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and Coast Guard to bankroll the proposed Mexican wall that will facilitate existing policies on illegal immigration.

The potential reduction would shrink the Coast Guard's budget from $9.1 billion to $7.8 billion, Politico reported Tuesday.

The Trump administration is considering drastically slashing several national security agency budgets in order to fund the President's long-promised border wall, according to a leaked budget draft.

Overall, the Department of Homeland Security would get a 6 percent boost to its budget, to $43.8 billion, according to documents obtained by reporters.

Both bear a hefty price tag.

The President's embattled border wall proposal, meanwhile, has gone through a number of renditions and might end up being paid for by American taxpayers, according to experts. The White House then proposed a 20 percent tax on imports from the key USA ally; the proposal was met with swift criticism as the two countries conduct some $1.6 billion a day in cross-border trade. "The budget shared by OMB, which explicitly targets the Coast Guard, TSA and FEMA, will weaken security and undermine all of the progress that was made over the last 4-years to recapitalize Coast Guard cutters, rescue boats, and icebreakers".

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Loy, a senior counselor at The Cohen Group, a Washington-based consulting firm, said it appeared Trump's budget office was experiencing a "learning curve" as they work to fulfill campaign promises without increasing government spending.

The latest proposal from the Trump administration is to slash the budgets for disaster relief, airport and rail security, and more programs.

When it comes to the debate over Trump's Muslim ban and proposed border wall, much of the discussion focuses on the ideas on the merits, which certainly makes sense.

Trump also insisted during and after his campaign that Mexico would pay for the wall, but it now appears that the United States might front the cost and seek repayment from Mexico through other means.

"The OMB treats the Coast Guard like a lunch fund to fund their other priorities within the Department of Homeland Security", Politico quotes quotes Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.), the chairman of the House T&I Coast Guard subcommittee, as saying. "It would be premature for us to comment - or anyone to report - on the specifics of this internal discussion before its publication", said OMB spokesman John Czwartacki, as reported by CNN.

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