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Trump wanted to put cattle on ladders over border wall, ex aide reveals

‘When it comes to Trump, the truth is always vastly more idiotic than fiction’

Maroosha Muzaffar
Tuesday 18 July 2023 08:27 BST
Related: Trump suggests he will not participate in first GOP debate

Donald Trump once allegedly proposed a plan in which ranchers would have to use ladders to transport their cattle over the border wall, according to a new book by a former Trump administration official.

Miles Taylor wrote in his upcoming book, Blowback: A Warning to Save Democracy From the Next Trump, that the former president had a “list of cruelly imaginative immigration policies”.

Mr Taylor recounted in his book that in 2019, Mr Trump “out of nowhere” expressed frustration that Texas ranchers were using openings in the border wall to allow their cattle to graze at the Rio Grande.

Mr Trump was concerned that this practice could potentially enable “thousands” of undocumented immigrants to enter the country, according to the book.

“Give the ranchers ladders,” Mr Trump reportedly said. “They can use ladders to get to the other side, but not doors. You could use small fire trucks. Call the local fire stations, and use the ladders on their trucks to help them get over.”

“Hold on, I thought we’re going to tell the Texas ranchers not to use the gates, borrow fire trucks instead, lean the ladders against the border wall, walk their cattle up the ladders (and over the other side somehow?), let the animals drink from the river for a little bit, and then hoist them back over?” Mr Taylor wrote.

The plan was “so incandescently stupid I couldn’t laugh,” he recalled thinking at the time.

He said Mr Trump went on to say that the plan was needed because Mexico “is a hellhole”.

“Have I said that yet? Because it is,” Mr Trump said, according to Mr Taylor. “It’s a hellhole, and no one f***ing wants that place. Forty thousand murders. Can you believe it? Sheesh.”

“When it comes to Trump, the truth is always vastly more idiotic than the fiction,” said the former White House aide.

“He spent more time coming up with imbecilic ideas at the border than he did focusing on his job. Sometimes the ideas were stupid. Sometimes they were illegal. Often they were both.”

In 2018, Mr Taylor voiced his criticism of Mr Trump in a New York Times op-ed titled “I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration” using the pseudonym “Anonymous” as the byline.

The Independent has reached out to Donald Trump’s office for a comment.

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