There’s a new sheriff in town. Chad Wolf is now the Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, having taken over that position from his predecessor, Kevin McAleenan, this month. One of Wolf’s first public appearances took place over the weekend as he headed down to Donna, Texas for a tour of the border wall currently under construction in the Rio Grande Valley. It was there that Wolf made it clear to the media that he is 100% behind President Donald Trump’s goal of building nearly 500 miles of new wall by the time the election rolls around next year.
“Simply put – walls work,” Wolf told reporters. “We have seen over and over again that when we construct a wall, illegal activity goes down. We saw it in the 1990s in San Diego, and we are seeing it today in El Paso.
“It’s common sense,” he continued. “No one disputes that we should give our men and women in the military the best equipment to keep them safe and to keep our country safe. Why should things be any different for the men and women of the Border Patrol, who are protecting our homeland?”
Wolf rejected critics who have pointed out that most of the administration’s construction thus far has been in areas that already had border fencing.
“When we tear down 1970s era landing mat wall that is seven-eight feet high and you put up what’s behind us, that’s not replacement wall — that is a new wall that is a new physical infrastructure,” he said. “So I don’t agree with the assertion that we’re simply replacing wall by constructing what’s behind us in places that have never had this type of physical infrastructure.”
Whatever critics might say about “updating” the old wall, there will be no room to doubt the next phase of the project, which aims to build a new border wall system along hundreds of miles of land that had no barrier before now. That makes it a complex project that necessitates buying up private land and re-appropriating it for the needs of the country. The administration, of course, must do this while battling the courts, the Democrats, and illegal immigration activists.
The imperative to get to work is unquestionable. President Trump made the wall his signature campaign promise, and he’s going to have to deliver the goods by the time he heads back out on the campaign trail next year. His supporters want and deserve to see what he’s done regarding one of the most potent threats to our nation. If he can point to the wall and say, “This – this is what I’ve done,” his second term is all but assured.