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Trump arrives in California amid protests over border wall

Trump arrives in California amid protests over border wall

After viewing the wall prototypes in an area of the border heavily cordoned off and far from the rallies on the United States side, Trump was then expected to address Marines in San Diego before attending a high-dollar fundraiser in Los Angeles, where he'll stay overnight. He says taxes in California "are double and triple what they should be".

Trump's solo flight suggests the political risk he brings to state Republicans given his low popularity in California.

After viewing the wall prototypes, Trump is expected to make a speech to members of the military back at Air Station Miramar.

The mayor, a business-friendly Republican and ardent supporter of the North American Free Trade Agreement, said a popular cross-border airport terminal connecting San Diego and Tijuana shows that "building bridges has worked wonders".

Trump tweeted Tuesday that "thousands of risky & violent criminal aliens are released as a result of sanctuary policies" and are "set free to prey on innocent Americans".

Protests are also planned across the border in Tijuana, Mexico, when Trump visits the wall prototypes built along the global border to fulfill his signature campaign promise.

"I don't think it's really fair how he has the choice to separate us, " he said. The protest's Facebook page now lists the start time as 5 PM, though the president's plans remain so unpublicized that the rally's start time has been modified on the page throughout the day.

Ultimately, the Trump administration expects that the whole border wall, when completed, would cost about $18 billion - though other estimates have ranged up to $38 billion.

Trump's visit comes amid as his administration has been engaged in a war of words over California's refusal to cooperate with federal immigration authorities.

Trump's official travel schedule following his arrival was not released.

Tillerson departs for Africa for talks with Buhari, others
Another top concern is African nations' growing indebtedness to Beijing, which is building infrastructure across the continent. Tillerson said China used corruption and predatory loan practices to undermine African governments and mire them in debt.


"We are working with all of our local and federal partners to ensure that all security safeguards are in place for the president's visit, both along his route of travel and at the locations where events will take place", Los Angeles police Detective Meghan Aguilar said. Trump has pledged that Mexico will pay for the cost of the border wall, a suggestion that President Enrique Pena Nieto rejected a year ago.

Earlier, about 250 Trump supporters rallied near San Diego's Otay Mesa border crossing.

Trump's visit comes just days after his Justice Department sued to block California laws created to protect people living in the USA illegally.

Trump has not yet received funding for the envisioned wall. "Traitor", said one. "Moron", said another - a reference to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who reportedly used that term to describe President Trump previous year, and who was abruptly fired earlier Tuesday morning.

Tractor-trailer rigs have been parked along the USA side, blocking the view from Mexico.

"I'll take you to East L.A. and Boyle Heights, " he said.

"He said: "[The President] actually tweeted on the plane that this wall would pay for itself by cutting crime - well, he's not got Congress or Mexico yet to pay for it so it might be handy if it pays for itself.

Jeff Schwilk, founder of San Diegans for Secure Borders, whose group participated in a rally in December near the prototypes that ended in clashes with counter-protesters, said the council's resolution does not reflect the views of many residents who feel the border is not secure.

Protests were held on the Mexican side, too, in Tijuana. But bridges are still better than walls. Built by private contractors from across the country, from Maryland to Arizona, the prototypes have been funded with $20 million from Customs and Border Protection.

"This is an environmental catastrophe, on top of a misallocation of government resources that could be used for health care or social services", Cody Petterson, president of the San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action, said of the wall. He was also to meet with border agents and officers to ask what they need, Homeland Security spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said. "It's something that he's going to continue to push for".


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