Chief patrol agent on proposed border wall - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Chief patrol agent on proposed border wall

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SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) - A day after President Trump's visit to San Diego, News 8 spoke with the Chief Border Patrol agent who gave the president a personal tour of the blueprints.

Trump spent about an hour Tuesday viewing the eight 30-foot-high samples that were built to offer an array of options for the wall Trump has promised to erect along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Chief Patrol Agent Rodney Scott was next to President Trump and answered questions as the president toured the eight border wall prototypes.

"It's the president of the United States. It's a little intimidating at first, but he made it very comfortable. He immediately asked operational questions - put me on my toes a little bit," said Chief Scott.

Some of the border wall prototypes are solid concrete, while others are made from a blend of materials including metal slats - which Trump said would be the best choice to secure the country's southern border.

"You have to have see-through. You have to know what's on the other side of the wall," Trump said. "You could be two feet away from a criminal cartel and not even know they're there."

Trump said the wall should have metal slats at the bottom and concrete or a blend of steel and concrete at the top. It should also have a rounded top to deter people who would climb the wall in an attempt to enter the United States.

"He is the president of the United States. He has a lot of influence, but I did not get the impression he wanted to force anything on us," said agent Rodney Scott.

Thou, the president did say the wall currently in place is effective, Chief Scott said it needs to be upgraded and expanded.

"You are always going to have a cross border threat. We proved what we have works if we had better materials, we could use less agents," said Chief Scott.

Former Congressman Duncan Hunter, Sr., helped put the double fence back in the 1990's. He was also present during the president's visit on Tuesday. Hunter believes more technology at the border is needed.

"We have to have a way to X-ray all these cargo things coming in through port of entry," said Hunter.

On Tuesday, Trump also took the opportunity to call on Congress to pass a budget that includes funding for the wall. Construction estimates for the project on the entire 1,900-mile border range from $21.6 billion to $70 billion.

Critics of the border wall said the billions of dollars spent on the project would be a waste of money.

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