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June 23, 2020

Rep. Kirkpatrick’s Statement Ahead of President Trump’s Visit to Southern Arizona Border Wall

(Tucson, A.Z.) – Today, Rep. Kirkpatrick released the following statement in advance of President Trump’s visit to Arizona. His visit includes a tour of border wall construction sites in Yuma, and then a student event in Phoenix.

As reported by The Arizona Republic, “Despite initial claims that Mexico would pay for the wall, the Trump administration has announced plans to divert more than $11 billion from the U.S. Defense Department for border wall construction.”

“We are in the middle of an unprecedented global pandemic and economic crisis; cases are surging in Arizona. Our hospitals are trying to meet the demand for care, people are waiting in line for hours to get tested and there is still so much unknown about this virus. Instead of leading our country through this crisis by ensuring Americans are healthy, and families and small businesses are financially stable, the President has scheduled a vanity tour to boost his campaign,” said Rep. Kirkpatrick.

“People that know, live, or work near the border do not want a wall. Border wall construction is bulldozing sacred land and harming precious eco systems. It’s not a coincidence that border communities have elected representatives who are outspoken against a border wall; our communities reject this political platform. We have been ignored by this administration, even when we simply ask for more details about proposed construction plans in our own backyard.

“Every time I meet with border town officials, ranchers, business owners, manufacturers and Customs and Border Protection personnel, they emphasize the real need: funding to modernize our ports of entry. Our ports need modern equipment and new lanes to help commercial vehicles haul trade more expeditiously back and forth. Our border state’s economy is stimulated by trade, labor and tourism with our southern neighbor. The obsession over a border wall as a “solution,” is such an out-of-touch narrative perpetuated by an out-of-touch President.

“It’s unfortunate he’s not coming to Arizona to discuss COVID-19 testing or to ensure our small businesses are able to survive this crisis,” said Rep. Kirkpatrick. “Today’s trip will be another example of President Trump placing his ego above Americans’ health and amplifying falsehoods about the southern borderlands we know and cherish.”

ATTACHED: Rep. Kirkpatrick wrote a letter to DHS in January about the border wall construction along the San Pedro River. Her office has included that letter in addition to a photo from her trip to the Douglas Port of Entry last fall where she discussed delivering more funds for port modernization as her top priority on the Appropriations Committee, photo available for media use.

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