Donald trump promised to build a 2,000-mile long wall across the border of the United States and Mexico " immediately" if he was elected president. However, plans for the wall have been beset by financial, legal and logistical problems since his election.

Trump's wall

The Border Wall was announced early on in Trump's presidential campaign in order to prevent illegal immigrants and illegal drugs from entering the country. It has been well noted that Trump has displayed an alarming naivety in thinking that a wall will prevent any such thing. The president was adamant that Mexico "will be paying, in some form, for the badly needed wall " in a tweet posted earlier this week.

Estimates for the cost of the wall range from $10 billion or more as quoted by the president himself if he builds " a super-duper, higher, better, better, security, everything else" (sic) to a more realistic $25 billion which takes into account repairs, construction, materials, labour, land acquisition and terrain.

Trump has been forced to scrap plans to find cash for the wall from this week's spending bill which must be passed by 28th April. Democrats had threatened to deliberately block the proposed bill if money was earmarked for its' construction.

Ted Cruz steps in

With funding for the wall likely to be an ongoing problem, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas initiated a brilliant idea. On Monday he introduced the ' Ensuring Lawful Collection of Hidden Assets Plan' or very cleverly 'El Chapo' for short!

The act is named after the infamous Mexican drug baron Joaquin Guzman, El Chapo , and is intended to seize illicit funds acquired from a prosecution of the drug lord totalling $14 billion which would go as a down payment towards the cost of the wall. As Senator Cruz said " By leveraging any... assets of El Chapo and his ilk, we can offset the wall's cost and make meaningful progress towards achieving President Trump's stated border security objectives.


Is it such a great idea?

Not only is this probably the best acronym anyone has come up with, it will also go some way to solving the funding problem of the border wall. US prosecutors routinely seize the assets of other drug traffickers so how poetically apt it would be that the US-Mexico border wall, which is intended to keep out drugs, should be funded by a Mexican drug baron.

The other option would be that the funding would be down to the American taxpayer and as Trump said clearly in his pre-election promises he would be introducing tax cuts across the board for everyone.

Has the introduction of the act been a bit of political gamesmanship by Senator Cruz rather than a genuine solution to the wall problem? The wall is fast becoming a political millstone around President Trump's neck as he strives to be seen as a man of action and decision but has little notion of the ongoing impact of his decisions. We can only wait and see, but surely it is unlikely that any builders will be tendering for the wall contract any time soon.