- Reuters/Jonathan Ernst
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Thursday that Congress was moving ahead with a plan to build a wall on the southern border of the US. He estimated the cost to be between $12 billion and $15 billion.
At a press conference with McConnell and House Speaker Paul Ryan, a CNN reporter asked about President Donald Trump’s relationship with Mexico and a pending meeting with Mexico’s president that Trump threatened to cancel over the issue of who will pay for the wall.
After saying he didn’t have any advice for Trump on his administration’s relationship with Mexico, McConnell said Congress is working on a supplemental bill to fund work on the border wall.
“We are moving ahead, as the speaker pointed out to our group yesterday, with a [supplemental bill of] roughly $12 [billion] to $15 billion,” McConnell said. “So we intend to address the wall issue ourselves, and the president can deal with his relations with other countries.”
McConnell did not say whether the cost of the wall would be offset with spending cuts.
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto released a statement on Wednesday that said, “Mexico will not pay for any wall.”
Trump then tweeted on Thursday morning, “If Mexico is unwilling to pay for the badly needed wall, then it would be better to cancel the upcoming meeting.”