President Obama is no fan of President-elect Trump’s plan to build a wall at the U.S.-Mexican border, but he is reportedly building a wall around his new digs in an upscale Washington, D.C., neighborhood in the same general area where the new president’s daughter and her family will reside.
Unlike most presidents and their families, historically, the Obamas are staying in Washington to enable their younger daughter to finish high school there, although pro-Donald Trump author Ed Klein claims that the real purpose is to set up a legacy-protecting shadow government in D.C. for the specific purpose of derailing the Trump train, i.e., thwarting the policies of the incoming Trump presidential administration.
The Obamas are renting a $5.3 million, nine-bedroom mansion in D.C.’s Kalorama enclave from Bill Clinton’s former press secretary, the Daily Mail detailed.
Donald Trump becomes the new White House resident at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue on January 20, upon his swearing in as the 45th president. Congress today formally affirmed his Electoral College victory.
TMZ was first with the story of Obama’s wall.
“President Obama is taking a cue from Donald Trump…he’s building himself a wall. We got photos of construction at Obama’s soon-to-be D.C. rental. You also see construction in the garage. As we reported, it will become an office with a bathroom. We broke the story…the rental will be home until Sasha graduates so the Obamas needed the property outfitted for the Secret Service and…it needed more fortification. BTW… he’s getting a new neighbor. Ivanka Trump and fam are moving nearby to a rental. At least the landlords know the checks will clear.”
President Obama Builds a Wall for Rental House (PHOTO GALLERY) https://t.co/ntpuu8xeep— TMZ (@TMZ) January 6, 2017
You may remember that earlier this year, billionaire Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg irritated some of his neighbors by building a six-foot high wall around his Hawaiian vacation property, as CNN reported. He also has plans to tear down four nearby houses that he purchased adjacent to his primary California residence apparently to construct a secure compound.
Zuckerberg has been outspoken in his opposition to Trump’s immigration policies. For example, at an April, 2016, tech conference, Zuckerberg said that “I’m starting to see people and nations turning inward, against this idea of a connected world and a global community. I hear fearful voices calling for building walls and distancing people they label as others. For blocking free expression, for slowing immigration, reducing trade, and in some cases around the world even cutting access to the internet,” Time recalled.
Zuckerberg and other Silicon Valley luminaries also launched a lobbying organization to push for immigration reform. The Facebook CEO also has 16 bodyguards, according to the New York Post’s Page Six gossip section.
On this general subject, historian and California resident Victor Davis Hanson, a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, mad the following observation.
“High crime, the flight of small businesses, and water shortages cannot bound the fences of Nancy Pelosi’s Palladian villa or the security barriers and walls of Mark Zuckerberg and other Silicon Valley billionaires — who press for more regulation, and for more compassion for the oppressed, but always from a distance and always from the medieval assumption that their money and privilege exempt them from the consequences of their idealism. There is no such thing as an open border for a neighbor of Mr. Zuckerberg or of Ms. Pelosi.”
As far as the actual border security wall is concerned, one of Trump’s primary campaign promises, the president-elect now says that the project will go forward ASAP and that Mexico will reimburse the U.S. later, the New York Times reported. The reimbursement process may be folded into the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). While coming up with federal funding for the wall may be an issue between President Trump and Congress, new legislation to do so may not be necessary, given that the Secure Fence Act of 2006 is already on the books.
Parenthetically, Bristol County, Massachusetts, sheriff Thomas Hodgson is an advocate of deploying prison inmates to the southern border to help build the wall.
“Aside from learning and perfecting construction skills, the symbolism of these inmates building a wall to prevent crime in communities around the country, and to preserve jobs and work opportunities for them and other Americans upon release, can be very powerful,” the sheriff said at his swearing-in ceremony on Wednesday, Reuters chronicled.
A separate Reuters dispatch in late November indicated that a large Mexican cement maker is ready to go to work on the construction of Trump’s border wall.
“We can’t be choosy,” Enrique Escalante, Chief Executive Officer of Grupo Cementos de Chihuahua (GCC) said in an interview. “We’re an important producer in that area and we have to respect our clients on both sides of the border.”
[Featured Image by Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Images]