GOP strategist says Trump could want border wall fight to continue to excite base

Republican pollster and strategist Patrick Ruffini said in an interview that aired Tuesday on "What America's Thinking" that President TrumpDonald John TrumpPaul Ryan defends Navy admiral after Trump's criticism Trump discussing visit overseas to troops following criticism: report Retired Army General: Trump is ‘acting like an 8th grader’ in attacking ex-Navy SEAL who led bin Laden operation MORE could want the political fight over the border wall to continue in order to keep his political base excited.

"For Republican voters, there's this sense of there's been a lot of talk about this issue but not a lot of action," Ruffini, co-founder of Echelon Insights, told Hill.TV's Joe Concha. 

"Maybe the cynic in me might say 'well, President Trump wants this issue to kind of go on to keep those voters rallied up,' " he continued. 

"But I think Republicans aren't necessarily dead set on a physical wall across all 2,000 miles," he said. "The wall is a state of mind. It's a symbol."

Building a wall along the U.S. southern border with Mexico was one of Trump's cornerstone campaign promises in 2016. 

Lawmakers on Capitol Hill put aside $1.6 billion this year for physical barriers and related technology for the border wall, however, Trump has said at campaign events that the amount of money is not enough. 

Congress has Dec. 7 deadline to fund the Department of Homeland Security, which could include funding for the border wall. 

However, House Minority Leader Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D'Alesandro PelosiPoll: 40 percent of Democrats want Speaker other than Pelosi Democrats with military background offer support for Pelosi House Democrat agenda, led by minimum wage, threatens economic prosperity MORE (D-Calif.) said on Tuesday that she does not expect any Democrats to vote for border wall funding. 

“I don’t see any of us voting for wall funding. … We have a responsibility to secure our borders. There are ways to do that that are consistent with civilization, humanitarianism and who we are as a nation. We have to remove all doubt about that,” Pelosi told Politico

— Julia Manchester