>> One of his first acts as US president, Donald Trump ordering the US Department of Homeland Security to begin immediate construction of a wall along the US border with Mexico, a pledge he repeated Tuesday night.>> We will soon begin the construction of a great, great wall along our Southern border.
>> But Congress has yet to authorize any new funding for that project, and so Trump ordered DHS to start construction with whatever money it already has. And after digging through the cushions of the couch, all the Department came up with was loose change. Reuters Washington Correspondent, Julia Edwards Ainsley, has the exclusive story.
>> This is actually a very surprisingly small amount of money. It was only about $20 million that they were able to find within their existing programs to spend on wall construction. And really, it won't even get them to construction, it will only get them into a prototype phase.
If they were to take all of this money, and put it toward construction tomorrow, it would only get them just a little over two miles of a fence, and just about one and a half miles of a wall. But it takes about $17 million per mile for a wall, and about $9.3 million per mile of fence, so $20 million does not go far in this vast landscape.
>> Reuters previously reporting exclusively that DHS estimates the border wall would cost $21.6 billion, far more than the $12 billion Trump projected on the campaign trail, or the $15 billion forecast by Republican leaders in Congress.>> Congressman Paul Ryan has said that he will attach a border funding bill to the 2018 budget, but a lot of Republicans have said that they really worry about the cost.
And clearly, if DHS could only find money for $20 million out of what could be a $20 billion project, Congress is looking like it's on the hook for a lot of this project.>> Many Republicans saying they would vote against a budget that does not offset the cost of the wall with other cuts.