Donald Trump huddled with top advisers at the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland for most of the day Sunday, as ABC News reported, in an attempt to come top with a solution to end the ongoing shutdown of large parts of the United States government over Trump’s demand for $5 billion in funding to construct his promised wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. When he returned later in the day, Trump appeared to have his solution — build a steel wall rather than a concrete one.
“I informed my folks to say that we’ll build a steel barrier. It’ll be less obtrusive and it’ll be stronger,” Trump said, as reported by CBS News reporter Mark Knoller via Twitter.
When asked why he believed Democrats in the House of Representatives, who have said that they will not approve any funding at all for a border wall, will consent to a “steel barrier,” Trump said, per Fox News, “They don’t like concrete, so we’ll give ’em steel. Steel is fine.”
“Democrats’ issue with the wall is obviously not about which material is used,” noted Toronto Star reporter Daniel Dale — who, as the Inquisitr has noted, frequently offers fact-checks on Trump statements — via his Twitter feed.
“That Trump thinks whether his fake wall is built with concrete or steel is a major issue is a sign of how untethered from reality he is,” added Aaron Rupar, a reporter for the political site Vox.com, on his own Twitter page.
Earlier on Sunday, Axios reported, Trump’s Acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney foreshadowed Trump’s later remarks, saying that Trump would be willing to “give up a concrete wall, (and) replace it with a steel fence” in order to offer a compromise to Democrats.
In a Twitter post on Sunday afternoon, Trump said that the supposed steel wall or “fence” would be a “good solution, and made in the U.S.A.”
But while manufacturing the steel for a border “barrier” would likely be, as Trump said, “made in the U.S.A,” at least some of the financial benefits would probably go to a top Russian oligarch. One of North America and the world’s largest steelmakers, Evraz Steel, is 31 percent owned by Roman Abramovich, the Russian business investor whose $11.2 billion estimates net worth makes him the world’s 140th richest person, according to Forbes Magazine.
Abramovich has been described as one of the “closest confidants” of Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to the investigative news blog DeSmog, and once gave Putin a $35 million yacht — as a gift, according to a BBC report.