ABC/NBC Ignore Contractors Building Border Wall Samples

There was a big step forward in the process towards constructing President Trump’s long-promised border wall on Wednesday. Down on the border, teams of contractors were beginning to descend on the area to begin construction on their visions for what the wall itself would look like. In spite of this progress, both ABC and NBC chose to skip this development during their evening broadcasts. CBS Evening News was the only one to mention the construction competition.

Anchor Anthony Mason began the segment by quipping about how taxpayers were the ones paying for the wall, while CBS Reporter Mireya Villarreal was down at the border watching the construction teams competing for the government contract.

Along the dusty roads between the San Diego-Tijuana border, contractors are racing to build their versions of what Trump's border wall will look like, the winner potentially taking home two federal contracts totaling $600 million,” she reported. “The prototypes will be between 18 feet and 30 feet high, and stretching 30 feet long. Contractors will have a month to build them. Each version could cost up to $500,000.

While Villarreal and her team were there, they witnessed Border Patrol agents chasing an illegal immigrant who had jumped the fence that was currently in place. “Juan Gomez says he crossed illegally from Mexico to find a better future for his family in the United States,” she noted after interviewing the man.

She also spoke with a human rights representative, Christian Ramirez, who dismissed the wall as a bad idea. “A border wall has not made us safe here. Drugs are still being pushed into this country through tunnels and through the ports of entry, while we're spending millions of dollars in building prototypes,” he told her.

The contractor competition came two weeks to the day after NBC Nightly News mocked President Trump for not making any progress on the construction of the wall. “But eight months into his presidency there is no formal plan for building the kind of wall the President has been touting for two years,” ridiculed Peter Alexander in his September 14 report.

NBC News has learned the study President Trump order in January on how to fully secure the border, yet to be finalized. The President’s transition team did little to advance the project, according to a top transition official,” he teased. “And Border Patrol authorities concede prototypes for the proposed wall are months behind schedule.

Alexander also claimed that “many construction firms, fearing political retaliation, are shying away from what would typically be a highly sought after and lucrative contract.” Clearly, that’s not the case.

Transcript below:

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CBS Evening News
September 27, 2017
6:43:02 PM Eastern

ANTHONY MASON: Work has begun on the President's signature campaign promise-- a border wall with Mexico. U.S. taxpayers are funding it. Mireya Villarreal checked it out.

[Cuts to video]

MIREYA VILLARREAL: Along the dusty roads between the San Diego-Tijuana border, contractors are racing to build their versions of what Trump's border wall will look like, the winner potentially taking home two federal contracts totaling $600 million. The prototypes will be between 18 feet and 30 feet high and stretching 30 feet long. Contractors will have a month to build them. Each version could cost up to $500,000.

Less than a few miles away from the construction site, we saw a man trying to outrun border patrol agents after illegally jumping the fence. ( Speaking Spanish with the detainee ) Juan Gomez says he crossed illegally from Mexico to find a better future for his family in the United States. Carlos Diaz is with the Department of Homeland Security.

CARLOS: DIAZ: Our objective is to give the Border Patrol here securing the borders the best tools available for them to be able to secure the border.

VILLARREAL: So what we have right now isn't good enough anymore?

DIAZ: Well, we're always looking to evolve.

DONALD TRUMP: By the way, the wall is happening, folks, okay. Believe me.

VILLARREAL: So far, President Trump has asked Congress for $1.6 billion.

CHRISTIAN RAMIREZ: It's unfortunate that the President is misleading the American public.

VILLARREAL: Christian Ramirez represents more than 60 human rights organizations along the border that opposed the wall.

RAMIREZ: A border wall has not made us safe here. Drugs are still being pushed into this country through tunnels and through the ports of entry, while we're spending millions of dollars in building prototypes.

[Cuts back to live]

VILLARREAL: Experts estimate President Trump's bigger border security plan, which could include the border wall, could cost upwards of $40 billion. Anthony.

MASON: Mireya Villarreal, thanks.


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CyberAlerts Foreign Policy Mexico Government Agencies Immigration Bias by Omission Broadcast Television ABC World News Tonight CBS CBS Evening News NBC NBC Nightly News Video Border Security Anthony Mason Mireya Villarreal Peter Alexander Donald Trump