An immigration think tank is encouraged by the decision of House Republicans to fund President Trump's border wall.
The $1.6 billion for the border wall will be included in the new homeland security bill, and Republicans expect a full-blown war with Democrats to get it passed. The money will be used to erect a border barrier in strategic areas, including 32 miles of new border fencing in Texas, 28 miles of a levee wall along the Rio Grande Valley (also in Texas), and 14 miles of replacement fence in San Diego.
"I think this is critical," says Art Arthur, a resident fellow in law and policy at the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS). "It's important for a variety of reasons. It's going to cut down not just illegal immigration, but also the flow of drugs across the border and the flow of other contraband. I think that this is absolutely crucial."
Arthur says the Republicans are going to have to take the case for funding the border wall to the American people.
"I think that there's definitely going to have to be a public information program about this in order to get this passed," he suggests. "It's not impossible, it's not insurmountable, and quite frankly, this was a very popular plank in the president's platform."
Arthur tells OneNewsNow the $1.6 billion is really a down payment on the fence, as the money will be used to focus on areas of the border where a physical barrier is most needed.