It's not cheap to halt illegal immigration in America. And even a business mogul like Donald Trump may have missed the bottom line.
Since Donald Trump declared his intention to run for president, the 2016 contender has struck a nerve with the country's conservatives. And his message on immigration has been paramount to his allure.
Over the weekend, Trump took his rhetoric to paper and outlined his comprehensive immigration plan, which included erecting a border wall, strengthening internal enforcements like E-Verify, tripling the number of Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers, and requiring all immigrants caught at the border to be detained until they are removed from the country, not released and monitored.
And while Trump says his plan would boost the American economy, estimates for similar policies indicate it would come with a hefty price tag.
In his plan, Trump demands Mexico pay for his state-of-the-art border wall, but Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto's spokesman told Bloomberg that the Mexican government has no intention of footing the bill. That leaves the cost of building up the border to the U.S., and an impenetrable wall comes at a multibillion-dollar price.
The U.S. already has in place more than 650 miles of border fencing. That project was estimated to have cost $2.4 billion in 2009 and will continue to cost billions to maintain. But Trump's plan calls for a better border fence. Assuming the existing fence is scrapped and replaced with one as secure as Israel's security barricade meant to deter terrorists, the cost of building a fence along all 1,989 miles of the southern border would come to more than $6 billion. National Journal once estimated it would cost $6.4 billion when all is said and done.