Acting Secretary of Defense Pat Shanahan on Friday confirmed that the Pentagon will transfer $1.5 billion in funds for President Trump’s long-promised border wall, according to VOA‘s Carla Babb.
Shanahan then added “I won’t be reprogramming any more money for the border wall.”
In March, CNN reported that the Pentagon had authorized $1 billion to begin construction on 57 miles of border fencing, which would be diverted from the DoD’s $2.5 billion drug-interdiction program authorized via Trump emergency order which reappropriated some $7 billion from various sources to build the wall.
The 56-year-old Shanahan has been acting secretary since James Mattis’s December resignation. Since taking over at the DoD, he has backed President Trump on several policy decisions, including Trump’s surprise announcement that the US would withdraw from Syria, as well as Trump’s deployment of US forces and other measures to stem the flow of illegal migration at the southern border.
Graham and other lawmakers later confronted Shanahan in Munich this year over Trump’s plans to withdraw troops from Syria, which the South Carolina senator reportedly slammed as “the dumbest f—ing idea I’ve ever heard.”
Shanahan was also chastised by Senate Democrats who accused him of withholding details on what military construction programs could be deferred to fund Trump’s border wall under the national emergency. –Politico
After President Trump complained to Shanahan in an April 29th one-on-one meeting about the speed at which barriers were being constructed at the southern border, Shananan announced during a May 2nd follow-up meeting with White House aides that the Pentagon had signed contracts to build 250 miles of border wall, according to Politico.
It looks like Trump will be able to hang his hat on the wall being built as we enter the 2020 election season.