El Paso residents are furious Trump is having a rally in their city and are speaking out about his border wall.
Trump is headed to El Paso, Texas, Monday night for a rally, and people in the city are pissed.
El Paso residents from both sides of the aisle say that Trump is spewing false information about the city's crime rate, and that a border wall will only hurt the city economically.
"As a fiscally conservative Republican, I just don't understand how spending $25 billion on a wall with limited effectiveness is a good idea," Republican Jon Barela, CEO of an organization that promotes economic development across the U.S.-Mexico border, told the New York Times in an interview.
"Mexico is an economic and strategic ally of the United States, and an antiquated effort to place a barrier between us just won't work," Barela said.
Trump began spreading lies about El Paso at his State of the Union address on Feb. 5, falsely stating that the city "used to have extremely high rates of violent crime" until a border fence was erected there, concluding that El Paso proves that "walls work, and walls save lives."
Fact-checkers have blown that false assertion to shreds, and the city's newly elected Democratic Rep. Veronica Escobar is demanding that Trump apologize for the lie.
"El Paso has never been one of the most 'dangerous cities' in the country, and our safety and security has long been a point of pride," Escobar wrote in a letter to Trump after his State of the Union address. "These distortions about our vibrant community are harmful to our reputation and degrade our spirit."
Trump's rally in El Paso — a city where 80 percent of the population is Hispanic and where Trump only garnered 26 percent of the vote in 2016 — is expected to draw counter protests.
Beto O'Rourke, who represented the city in the House before his unsuccessful Senate bid in 2018, is holding a counter rally Monday during Trump's visit.
O'Rourke is billing the event as a "march for truth."
"We will meet lies and hate with the truth and a vision for the future from the U.S.-Mexico border," O'Rourke said in a video posted to his Twitter feed advertising the event.
Trump's rally begins at 7 p.m. MST.
But he better watch out: His hateful rally may be overshadowed by a peaceful march that will further injure his fragile ego.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.