Donald Trump threw a 30-minute tantrum when he was told that the federal government doesn’t have the authority to completely shut down the U.S. border, a new report claims.
Trump won the 2016 election largely on his promise to crack down on illegal immigration and build a wall that would totally shut down the flow of immigrants. But Trump has made little progress on building the wall, and a new report from Vox claimed that Trump failed to understand even basics about what the U.S. government can do regarding border entries.
According to the report, Trump grew furious at Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen this week for her failure to stop immigrants entering the United States. This “tantrum” went on for 30 minutes, which it noted was unusually long for one of Trump’s anger outbursts, and left other officials in the room feeling uncomfortable.
A report from the New York Times claimed that Nielsen even wrote a letter of resignation after the outburst, but has not submitted it. Another report from Politico noted that Trump is growing increasingly frustrated with Nielsen, and the knives may be coming out for her. A number of unnamed advisers told the outlet that she was a “never-Trumper” who does not stand behind Trump’s agenda.
Trump’s anger this week reportedly came from the fact that 50,000 people were taken into federal custody in the last two months after crossing the border without papers. At the meeting, both Nielsen and Attorney General Jeff Sessions tried in vain to explain to Donald Trump that the federal government cannot completely shut down the border.
Donald Trump had grown angry in recent weeks for reports of a roughly 1,200-person “caravan” of asylum-seekers from Central America traveling toward the U.S. border. After learning about the annual caravan, Trump used it as rationale for putting up the wall he has been seeking, CNBC reported.
Trump repeatedly said during the 2016 campaign that the border wall, which would cost close to $25 billion, would be funded by Mexico — though Mexican officials have said repeatedly that they will not pay for the wall. Trump so far has authorized roughly $1.6 billion for upgrades to existing border fences and security, and has also deployed the U.S. National Guard at the Mexico border.