This town is proof that Trump’s wall can work
By Paul Sperry
New York Post
January 13, 2018

Federal data show a far-less imposing wall than the one Trump envisions — a two-story corrugated metal fence first erected under the Bush administration — already has dramatically curtailed both illegal border crossings and crime in Texas’ sixth-largest city [El Paso], which borders the high-crime Mexican city of Juarez.

When the project first started in 2006, illegal crossings totaled 122,261, but by 2010, when the 131-mile fence was completed from one end of El Paso out into the New Mexico desert, immigrant crossings shrank to just 12,251.

They hit a low of 9,678 in 2012, before slowly ticking back up to a total of 25,193 last year. But they’re still well below pre-fence levels, and the Border Patrol credits the fortified barrier dividing El Paso from Mexico for the reduction in illegal flows.

And crime abated with the reduced human traffic from Juarez, considered one of the most dangerous places in the world due to drug-cartel violence, helping El Paso become one of the safest large cities in America.

Before 2010, federal data show the border city was mired in violent crime and drug smuggling, thanks in large part to illicit activities spilling over from the Mexican side. Once the fence went up, however, things changed almost overnight.

Drug smuggling along that border entry point has also fallen dramatically. In fact, since the fence was completed, the volume of marijuana and cocaine coming through El Paso and seized by Border Patrol agents has been cut in half.

All told, a legion of empirical evidence supports the idea a southern border wall could, in fact, work. There is also anecdotal evidence. In local press accounts, El Paso residents and business owners alike have praised the fence, citing it as an effective deterrent to both illegal crossings and crime.

Now Trump plans to build a possibly bigger deterrent.

The existing fence along the El Paso sector, which is made of a combination of corrugated steel and metal meshing, towers 21-feet high at some points and is already hard to climb. But the Trump wall, which will begin construction in El Paso, will be even taller and have multiple layers of security.

Read the full column here.