Charles Krauthammer’s column today in the Washington Post makes the argument that I’ve been touting for months: that a more extensive border fence would be the most cost-effective means of reducing the flow of illegal immigrants at the southern border:
The president himself boasted about having already increased the number of border guards by one-third under his administration. Yet he acknowledges in the same speech that we do not have the border under control — “full control,” as he comically put it. The president’s new solution? Increase the number of border guards again, by half this time. Everyone knows that anything short of enough border guards to do Hands Across America from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean won’t do a thing to eliminate illegal immigration.
The only thing that might work is a physical barrier. The president offhandedly dismisses a wall as something that could never stop the “enormous pressure on our border.”
By what logic? Opponents pretend that these barriers can always be circumvented by, say, tunnels or clandestine entry by sea. Such arguments are transparently unserious. You’re hardly going to get 500,000 illegals lining up outside a tunnel or on a pier. Such choke points are exactly how you would turn the current river of illegal immigrants into narrow streams — which is all we need to turn the illegal immigration problem from out of control to eminently manageable.