GOP senator says US should 'confiscate' money from Mexican cartels to build border wall

GOP senator says US should 'confiscate' money from Mexican cartels to build border wall
© Greg Nash

Sen. Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyEnergy Department clears ‘small-scale’ natural gas exports for fast approval GOP senators introduce resolution endorsing ICE Lawmakers pitch dueling plans for paid family leave MORE (R-La.) says the U.S. should "confiscate" money from Mexican drug cartels to fund President TrumpDonald John TrumpGillibrand urges opposition to Kavanaugh: Fight for abortion rights 'is now or never' Trump claims tariffs on foreign nations will rescue US steel industry: report Bannon announces pro-Trump movie, operation team ahead of midterms: report MORE’s proposed border wall.

The Republican senator spoke with conservative outlet Breitbart News in an interview published Monday about his plan to “enhance border security" and fund the wall by seizing billions from drug cartels over the border.

“The cartels move about $110 billion a year from the United States to Mexico,” Cassidy told Breitbart. “If we can stop that, confiscate that money, we can use cartel money to build the wall.” 

ADVERTISEMENT

" It won’t be the Mexican government, it’ll be the Mexican cartels [paying for the wall], and that’s probably the better party to build it," Cassidy added. 

Back in February, Cassidy introduced an amendment to the Internal Revenue Code that would allow "the use of illicit drug trafficking proceeds to pay for physical barriers, tactical infrastructure and technology in the vicinity of the United States border."

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP senator reviving effort to rein in Trump on tariffs The Hill's 12:30 Report GOP’s midterm strategy takes shape MORE (R-Ky.) said at a Republican conference in Philadelphia that Trump’s proposed wall to stretch the 1,900-mile Mexican border is likely to cost between $12 billion and $15 billion.

Cassidy suggests issuing bonds that would be overseen by the attorney general, Department of Homeland Security and the Treasury in order to fund the crackdown on cartel money laundering. The senator added that the bonds would be repaid "with money seized from and forfeited by drug traffickers moving illicit profits across the southern border."

Trump pledged to build a border wall during his 2016 presidential campaign and has said repeatedly that Mexico would fund it. He has also demanded that Congress approve funding to build the wall in the spending package in September.