In September, San Diego’s KPBS reported that a Department of Homeland Security test carried out by the U.S. military and border patrol agents back in 2017 showed that steel slat prototypes of President Trump’s border wall could be cut through using common tools.
Previously, photos acquired through the Freedom Of Information Act had been redacted, but a photo of one of the fences breached in the test has been obtained exclusively by NBC News.
President Trump was asked about the photo Thursday morning outside the White House. “That was a wall designed by previous administrations,” Trump said.
The design had been used by previous administrations, but this particular prototype was built under the current administration, according to NBC News.
A spokesperson for U.S. Customs and Border Protection told KPBS originally that the walls weren’t designed to be “indestructible,” only to “impede or deny efforts to scale, breach, or dig under such a barrier, giving agents time to respond.”
The government is nearly three weeks into a partial shutdown largely due to President Trump’s demand that Congress fund his border wall to the tune of $5.7 billion.
“All Americans are hurt by uncontrolled illegal migration. It strains public resources and drives down jobs and wages. Among those hardest hit are African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans,” Trump said during a national television address from the Oval Office Tuesday.
“Democrats have offered Republicans multiple proposals to keep the government open, including one that already passed the Senate unanimously,” Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Tuesday in a joint rebuttal to the president. “All of which include funding for strong, sensible, and effective border security – not the president’s ineffective and expensive wall.”
Despite Trump’s claim, illegal immigration from Mexico has been steadily declining for a decade.