State Department official told Congress: No strategy to get Mexico to pay for wall

Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Kimberely Breier told Congress last year that that she has no strategy to get Mexico to pay for President Trump’s border wall, records obtained by Hill.TV reveal. 

“As our principal diplomat for the Americas, do you intend to formulate a strategy to make Mexico pay for a border wall between our countries?” Senate Foreign Relations Committee ranking member Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) asked Breier in a question for the record.

The then-State Department nominee responded flatly, “No, but I am committed to helping secure our borders.”

“The United States and Mexico work together to stop the flow of drugs and other contraband that travel in both directions across our shared border. We also work together to improve efficiencies at ports of entry to ensure the legitimate flow of commerce and travelers,” Breier said.

Breir told lawmakers, “Mexico has consistently stated it will not pay for a border wall. The president and Congress will ultimately make a decision about funding.”

Getting Mexico to the pay for the border wall was one of Trump’s signature campaign promises in the 2016 presidential election. Trump has said after taking office that he fulfilled this promise by renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement and securing more favorable terms for the U.S. 

Breier’s key position in the State Department as head of western hemisphere affairs includes purview over relations of significant U.S. interest, including Venezuela, Mexico and the Northern Triangle. She previously served in the U.S. intelligence community and as director of the U.S.-Mexico Futures Initiative for the Center for Strategic International Studies in Washington, D.C. 

The State Department did not respond to a request for comment.

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—Saagar Enjeti 

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