Trump to Congress: Walls Work—That’s Why Rich People Use Them

President Trump on Friday issued a letter to Congress advocating for increased border security and a border wall with a bizarre new argument. The president began his letter by congratulating Nancy Pelosi on her re-election as speaker of the House—but he quickly pivoted to his fear-mongering rhetoric on border security. “A nation that fails to control its borders cannot fulfill its most basic obligations to its citizens—physical safety, economic security, essential public services, and the uniform protection of our laws,” Trump wrote. Later in the letter, he advocated specifically for the wall, writing, “Walls work. That’s why rich, powerful, and successful people build them around their homes.”

To conclude the letter, Trump gave two immediate legal recommendations that he claimed would “protect these children from abuse.” But one of those recommendations, puzzlingly, was ending the Flores Settlement Agreement—which in fact guards children from abuse by ensuring they have access to proper medical treatment and limiting the time they can spend in detention facilities, and does not, as Trump claimed, force families to be separated.