Trump bashes state as he views wall de­signs

He fa­vors all con­crete but notes it must be see-through

The Dallas Morning News - - Nation & World - Julie Wat­son and Jill Colvin, The As­so­ci­ated Press

SAN DIEGO — Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump on Tues­day ea­gerly in­spected eight tow­er­ing pro­to­types for his long-sought wall at the U.s.mex­ico bor­der and ac­cused Cal­i­for­nia of putting “the en­tire na­tion at risk” by re­fus­ing to take tough ac­tion against il­le­gal im­mi­gra­tion.

Trump, mak­ing his first trip to Cal­i­for­nia as pres­i­dent, said he pre­ferred a fully con­crete wall be­cause it was the hard­est to climb, but he noted that it needed to be see-through. He said the first thing he no­ticed on the drive to the bor­der was the patched-up holes in part of the ex­ist­ing fence.

“We have a lousy wall over here now, but at least it stops 90, 95 per­cent,” Trump said. “When we put up the real wall, we’re go­ing to stop 99 per­cent. Maybe more than that.”

Trump’s visit was greeted with peace­ful protests by de­mon­stra­tors both for and against his planned wall. The trip came amid an es­ca­lat­ing bat­tle be­tween his ad­min­is­tra­tion and the lib­eral state, which has re­fused to help fed­eral agents de­tain im­mi­grants in the U.S. il­le­gally.

The pres­i­dent re­newed his crit­i­cism of Demo­cratic Gov. Jerry Brown, say­ing Tues­day that he was pre­sid­ing over sky-high tax rates and that the state’s sanc­tu­ary poli­cies “put the en­tire na­tion at risk.”

“They’re the best friend of the crim­i­nal,” Trump said. “That’s what ex­actly is hap­pen­ing. The crim­i­nals take refuge in these sanc­tu­ary cities, and it’s very dan­ger­ous for our po­lice and en­force­ment folks.”

The Jus­tice Depart­ment last week sued to block a trio of Cal­i­for­nia laws de­signed to pro­tect peo­ple liv­ing in the U.S. il­le­gally. Brown ac­cused U.S. At­tor­ney Gen­eral Jeff Ses­sions of “go­ing to war” with Cal­i­for­nia to ap­pease Trump.

Af­ter leav­ing the bor­der, Trump basked in the cheers of U.S. Marines in Mi­ra­mar, point­ing to his work to build up the na­tion’s mil­i­tary. He also sug­gested there may some­day be a “space force” fight­ing along­side the na­tion’s mil­i­tary branches.

Ref­er­enc­ing his 2016 cam­paign show­down against Hil­lary Clin­ton — who re­ceived 4 mil­lion more votes than Trump in Cal­i­for­nia — the pres­i­dent vowed that “very soon we’re go­ing to Mars” and the na­tion would not be seek­ing to ex­plore the red planet had his op­po­nent won.

Trump was later at­tend­ing a high-dol­lar fundraiser in Los An­ge­les, where he’ll stay overnight.

Demon­stra­tions were held at the San Ysidro port of en­try in San Diego, the na­tion’s busiest bor­der cross­ing, where pro­test­ers chanted, “No ban! No wall!” as honk­ing cars and buses cheered them on. Protests were also held on the Mex­i­can side, in Ti­juana.

This isn’t Trump’s first visit to the bor­der. He trav­eled to Laredo — one of Texas’ safest cities — weeks af­ter declar­ing his can­di­dacy in June 2015.

Trump told re­porters then that he was putting him­self “in great dan­ger” by com­ing to the bor­der. But, he said, “I have to do it. I love this coun­try.”

Mandel Ngan/agence France-presse

Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump spoke dur­ing an in­spec­tion of bor­der wall pro­to­types Tues­day in San Diego. Trump — mak­ing his first trip to Cal­i­for­nia as pres­i­dent — warned there would be “bed­lam” with­out the wall.

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