Local experts react to President Trump’s State of the Union Address

El Paso News

Local professors did not agree with what the president had to say about border security and funding a border wall.

“Walls are not a very effective usage of that money and they are not very effective in terms of stopping migration and they really don’t help in stopping drugs all that much,” UTEP Economics professor Tom Fullerton said.

UTEP Communications professor Dr. Richard Pineda told KTSM the president uses the same arguements that he’s been using over border safety such as crimes related to undocumented immigrants. 

“There are the same things that the president has used over and over again and I think after the debate over the shutdown there really isn’t a turn in the public in how they perceive those problems,” Pineda said.

President Trump mentioned El Paso in his speech saying:

“The border city of El Paso, Texas used to have extremely high rates of violent crime. One of the highest in the entire country and considered one of the most dangerous cities… Immediately upon it’s building, with a powerful barrier in place, El Paso is one of the safest cities in the our country.”

Experts also said the president’s claims about El Paso and its safety was unfactual and a mischaracterization of the Borderland. 

“El Paso has been one of the safest cities in the United States according to the FBI and other law enforcement statistical resources for at least the past five decades if not longer,” Fullerton said.

The professors all agreed that after watching the address tonight, we’ll still see the same gridlock between President Trump and Democrats over the border wall and its funding.

“He was still I think very adament in terms of pushing for money for that wall but again the language has changed right,” EPCC assistant professor Amber Archuleta said. 
“First we heard a wall then some type of a steel barrier and we’ve heard this barricade so I think the language shifts but the intent of building this structure is still very much in tact.” 

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.