President Trump has disturbed military leaders and officials in the Department of Homeland Security in recent months for repeatedly requesting that a contract for border wall construction be awarded to a company owned by a Republican donor and frequent Fox News guest, The Washington Post reported.
Trump has made the request — that a contract be awarded to the North Dakota-based Fisher Industries — during White House meetings, phone calls and during discussions aboard Air Force One, administration officials told the Post. The head of Fisher Industries, Tommy Fisher, has been a guest on many conservative radio and TV shows in recent months to tout his company’s claim that it could build more than 200 miles of wall along the border in less than a year.
Trump has spoken with the commanding general of the Army Corps, Lt. Gen. Todd Semonite, frequently about Fisher in recent months and again on Thursday, according to the Post. Trump reportedly brought up Fisher immediately.
The White House told the Post that Trump is just interested in making the construction project quick and cheap for taxpayers.
“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 Sanders told the Post. “He wants to make sure we get the job done under budget and ahead of schedule.”
The military became tasked with awarding contracts for border wall construction after President Trump declared a national emergency at the border so he could work around Congress to get funding for his pet project.