While building a wall along the Mexican border should not be impossible for the USA, I wonder how they could make Mexico pay for it.

One way would be to pay 50-50, but I don't see the incentive for Mexico to do this. Also, from what Trump says, it seems he wants Mexico to pay in full.

The only other way I could think of is to force Mexico to pay money by either kidnapping Mexican border guards or by blackmailing Mexico by blocking sea trade routes to Mexico using an aircraft carrier. But doing so would have an very negative impact on global image of the USA, so probably such an step won't be taken.

So what are some more appropriate options for USA?

Trump's wall plan is about how and why Trump wants to get the wall built. This one is about how he/US will make Mexico pay for it. So they are different.

  • @DrunkCynic That question is about why trump want's to build the wall. This is about how he'll get money from mexico for that wall. So different question Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 8:45
  • The USA could in theory blackmail Mexico with: Either you pay, or I deport 2 million convicted criminals to your country!
    – gerrit
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 11:34
  • In the last twenty-four hours I have heard the supposed "wall" described as a "fence". (Could it end up as a hedge?). Fences that have been put up in Europe to deter Syrian refugees from crossing borders have proved most ineffective. Unless they are heavily electrified, or have manned machine-gun posts every hundred yards or so they do not provide much deterrence to someone with a pair of wire cutters.
    – WS2
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 15:15
  • 1
    @WS2: It doesn't take "heavy" electrification to detect cut wires. Sure, the spy thrillers love to show use of alligator clips to jumper around a section to be cut, but that changes the length of the signal path and substantially alters the impedance characteristics, resulting in reflections. A helicopter could be on-site where damage is occurring before a passage could be made through a multilayer fence. And much greater use of force (not necessarily bullets, how about immobilizing foam?) is defensible when you can rule out harming people accidentally wandering across.
    – Ben Voigt
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 23:54
  • I have mentioned that this question is not the duplicate of the other. I don't see why it has been closed as dup? can someone explain? Commented Nov 15, 2016 at 4:37

1 Answer 1


While there are several schemes out there, the most common is to impound remittance payments between the US and [Mexico:], or portions of the remittance which would have the impact of a tax (http://townhall.com/columnists/katiekieffer/2016/09/05/mexico-will-pay-for-the-wall-n2213934)

Every year, Mexicans working in the U.S. send at least $20 billion back to Mexico in the form of remittances, placing a huge drain on our economy. Through a combination of legal and procedural challenges, Trump could impound such remittances.

Tune into your local Spanish TV or radio network on any given day and—if you’re fluent in Spanish—you’re bound to catch frequent advertisements from organizations promising to help you send money home to Mexico. Trump’s administration could have the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) enforce large fines on networks that air such commercials.

Mexico’s government, unsurprisingly, threatens that if the U.S. impounds remittances, it will feel harsh consequences—like an uptick in money laundering. But the U.S. could easily push back even harder—legalizing drugs and effectively snuffing out Mexico’s drug cartels and crime rings overnight.

Other options:

Besides cracking down on remittances, “visa fees,” “visa cancellations,” and the enforcement or enactment of “trade tariffs” are three additional ways in which Trump proposes to make Mexico pay for the wall.

  • 2
    I do not think getting a republican government to legalize drugs counts as easy.
    – Erik
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 8:33
  • 2
    Also, the assumption that fighting against crime organizations in Mexico will hurt the Mexican government gets into the realm of libel. Mexican people and its government are the most affected by these criminal organizations, and the columnist writes as if she was (and let me bold it) so stupid as to believe that drug cartels pay taxes to the Mexican government. There has been for a long time international collaboration against these organizations, whose power is mostly backed by the huge amounts of money they get from USA drug buyers.
    – SJuan76
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 9:46
  • 1
    And the other proposal seems rather strange, too. Would it target any TV that airs commercials of banks (which, as you happen to know, often offer international transfers as part of their services)? Only adds that explicitly mention money transfer? Only Spanish speaking channels who show adds for banks? Wouldn't it just rather stop the commercials from being aired? How much of the estimated US $ ten billion is expected to reap from fines to TV stations? Don't you have a better source?
    – SJuan76
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 10:02
  • How could the FCC fine networks for airing commercials for legal products? Isn't that in violation with freedom of speech rights?
    – gerrit
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 11:32
  • 2
    You guys are condemning the messenger. I didn't say it was a good plan
    – user9790
    Commented Nov 14, 2016 at 14:20

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