Ted Cruz Wants Drug Lord to Pay for Border Wall
Senator introduces 'EL CHAPO' bill
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 26, 2017 2:28 AM CDT
Authorities escort Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, center, from a plane to a waiting caravan of SUVs at Long Island MacArthur Airport earlier this year.   (US law enforcement via AP, File)
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(Newser) – Mexico says it won't pay for the border wall, but Ted Cruz has a plan to solve the funding standoff that involves getting a rich Mexican to pay for it. The senator introduced the EL CHAPO—Ensuring Lawful Collection of Hidden Assets to Provide Order—Act on Tuesday, calling for the government to pay for the wall with assets seized from drug lord Joaquin Guzman. Cruz said the government is seeking the forfeiture of $14 billion from Guzman, which would "go a long way toward building a wall that will keep Americans safe and hinder the illegal flow of drugs, weapons, and individuals across our southern border," NBC Dallas reports. Guzman was extradited to the US two days before President Trump's inauguration.

The plan to seize the drug kingpin's assets met with approval and amusement on social media, reports the San Diego Union-Tribune. "Building a wall with money taken from a man notorious for tunneling under walls would be fun, I guess," one commenter tweeted. It's not clear, however, whether the US will be able to get its hands on anything close to $14 billion. Guzman's lawyers tell the New York Daily News that the US has "yet to demonstrate that Mr. Guzman has any assets at all." The Guardian reports that as the federal dispute over wall funding continued Tuesday, Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray called the proposed wall a "hostile act" and vowed that Mexico wouldn't contribute a single peso.

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