Politics

Trump Denies He Promised Staffers A Pardon If They Broke The Law

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Jason Hopkins Immigration and politics reporter

President Donald Trump denied a report that he promised staffers immunity if they broke the law attempting to hasten progress of border wall construction.

His comment was in response to a Washington Post article about the president’s efforts to quickly build sections of wall along the southern border ahead of the 2020 election. The article stated that Trump is so eager to get more of the wall built, he is promising hesitant aides a pardon if they break the law.

“Don’t worry, I’ll pardon you,” he allegedly told officials during meetings regarding the wall.

Trump tweeted Wednesday that the article was “another totally Fake [sic] story in the Amazon Washington Post,” adding that it was “made up” to “demean and disparage.”

Constructing a wall between the U.S. and Mexico was Trump’s trademark campaign promise during the 2016 presidential contest, and chants of “build the wall!” remain a crowd favorite at Trump rallies. However, putting up an actual wall has proven easier said than done. A coalition of Democrats, environmentalists and other progressive activists have repeatedly sued the Trump administration in an effort to stop or slow construction.

Funding from Congressional Democrats, along with private property owners near the border, have also served as a major roadblock.

Construction crews work on a border wall on June 01, 2019 in Sunland Park, New Mexico. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Construction crews work on a border wall on June 01, 2019 in Sunland Park, New Mexico. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Roughly 60 miles of “replacement” barrier have been built by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in the first 2.5 years of Trump’s term, according to WaPo — all of which are replacements of existing border wall.

However, the administration has pointed out that more context is needed. Much of the old walls were vehicle barriers, which could easily be crossed by illegal immigrants on foot. The walls being built in their place are deemed impassible for typical illegal aliens traveling on foot.

“Much of the Wall being built at the Southern border is a complete demolition and rebuilding of old and worthless barriers,” Trump tweeted in March. “Problem is, the Haters say that is not a new wall, but rather a renovation.” (RELATED: Defense Secretary Says 256 Miles Of New Border Wall Coming Soon)

Trump has repeatedly promised new fencing by the 2020 election. The acting director of the United States Citizenship Immigration Services, Ken Cuccinelli, on Tuesday said “400+” of border wall would be built with the help of the Department of Defense.

Comment from Nick Miroff, who co-authored the WaPo article, will be added should the Daily Caller News Foundation receive one.

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