- Yuri Gripas/Reuters
- Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law, has been put in charge of delivering construction of Trump’s promised wall along the US-Mexican border, The Washington Post reports.
- According to The Post, Kushner wants to speed up the forced purchase of private land to allow the construction to go ahead.
- He is said to be aiming to complete 450 miles, a little less than a quarter of the 2,000-mile border, by the end of next year.
- Building a wall along the US-Mexico border was a signature campaign promise of Trump’s in 2016, but very little new building has taken place.
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Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law, has been put in charge of expediting the building of a wall on the US-Mexico border.
It is another task in Kushner’s broad portfolio of White House responsibilities, which already includes securing peace in the Middle East and reforming the criminal-justice system.
Current and former US officials told The Washington Post that Kushner had been holding twice-weekly meetings with top officials aimed at driving construction forward.
He is said to be aiming to deliver 450 miles of new wall by the end of 2020, which would cover a little less than one quarter of the 1,954-mile border between the US and Mexico.
This goal would require a striking increase in the pace of construction since Trump took office in January 2017.
Work so far has focused on reinforcing existing barriers, and the first building of new barriers started only in October, 22 months after Trump’s inauguration.
Trump’s plans for the wall stalled in Congress, forcing the president to dramatically scale back the project.
Kushner’s stewardship of the wall, The Post said, involves twice-weekly meetings with officials about contractor data, detailed plans for the wall, and funding. He also relays the president’s views to the group.
- Reuters/Kevin Lamarque
The Post said Kushner was also said to be seeking to pressure US Customs and Border Protection and the US Army Corps of Engineers to expedite the forced purchase sale of private land to make space for the wall.
The White House did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment on the report.
One official told the publication Kushner took a “much more hands-on role in figuring out, mile by mile, how to get more wall up.”
“It didn’t help put wall up faster and cheaper,” the person continued. “His interventions actually just created more inefficiency in the process.”