President Donald Trump has said repeatedly that Mexico will foot the bill for his long-promised border wall, but one Republican lawmaker has called upon the president to put up some of his own money if America’s neighbor to the south won’t pony up the cash.
Rep. Walter Jones, who supports the wall idea, is worried about the federal deficit.
“If Mexico isn’t going to be made to pay for a wall, that means funds must be found internally,” the North Carolina Republican said in a statement Friday.
“As a wealthy man, the president might consider pledging some of his own funds as well [to help build the wall],” Jones said. “Whatever it takes, just so long as we don’t add to the debt that is bankrupting our great country.”
Trump, who has recently begun insisting that Mexico will pay for the wall thanks to his renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, is currently engaged in a standoff with Congress over funding for the proposed wall.
The federal government began a partial shutdown the Friday before Christmas as the White House and lawmakers failed to reach an agreement.
Jones and other Republicans have argued that the wall must be built to stem illegal border crossings, but the government needs a “fiscally responsible plan” to pay for the project.
“America’s national debt is nearly $22 trillion. Next year our annual deficit is projected to top $1 trillion. We can’t afford to keep financing the provision of government services by borrowing more and more money. It’s morally irresponsible and it’s got to stop,” Jones said.