Friday, September 20, 2019

Trump personally pushing for GOP donor’s construction company to get border wall contract

President Trump has personally pushed for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to give a GOP donor and frequent Fox News guest’s construction company a border wall contract, according to the Washington Post.

Trump has repeatedly urged leaders at the Army Corps and the DHS to award the contract to North Dakota-based Fisher Industries, according to the Post. Fisher’s CEO, Tommy Fisher, frequently appears on Fox News and conservative talk radio, claiming his firm can build over 200 miles of wall in under a year and that the company’s weathered steel design would allow it to complete the project on time at a lower cost.

Fisher has also met with members of Congress and invited government officials to see barrier prototypes in the desert. “Fisher has invited officials of many agencies and members of Congress to demonstrate what we believe are vastly superior construction methods and capabilities,” Scott Sleight, an attorney for Fisher, told the Post.

“Consistent with the goals President Trump has also outlined, Fisher’s goal is to, as expeditiously as possible, provide the best quality border protection at the best price for the American people at our Nation’s border.” The Post reported that Trump’s “aggressive” push for Fisher to receive the contract has surprised Homeland Security and military officials.

Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner has also reportedly campaigned for the company to be given a contract, as has Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), who has received thousands in campaign donations from Fisher. The company was one of six to build border wall prototypes near San Diego in 2017 but was told its proposed design did not meet Army Corps standards.

Fisher sued the U.S. government last month, claiming unspecified improprieties in the border wall procurement process. “The President is one of the country’s most successful builders and knows better than anyone how to negotiate the best deals,” White House press secretary Sarah Sander told the Post in an email.

THE HILL