SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and President Trump may have met in the Oval Office Tuesday, but their accounts of what was discussed differ.
Faulconer visited the White House this week to discuss the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement and raise concerns over polluted water flowing in the Tijuana River Valley.
Following the meeting, Faulconer confirmed the topics on Twitter, saying, "We talked about the pending #USMCA deal, California’s homeless crisis, and I also brought up sewage coming from the Tijuana River Valley – and encouraged more federal action to fix it."
Though Wednesday night, the President told Fox News' Sean Hannity, another topic came up: "The wall."
“We just finished San Diego, as you know, San Diego, in California. They’re so happy. The mayor was just up in my office, great guy. He came up to thank me for having done the wall because it’s made such a difference. He said, it’s like day and night. He said people were flowing across and now nobody can come in,” Trump said.
This didn't happen, Faulconer's director of communications, Craig Gustafson, says.
“That’s not what Mayor Faulconer said. We all know that the President uses his own terminology. But that wasn’t the focus of their conversation," Gustafson said. "The President as an aside asked Mayor Faulconer what he thought about the border, and the Mayor’s response is that we welcome federal investment in our land ports of entry. We're the busiest border crossing in the Western Hemisphere, and federal dollars help us make it easier to trade, cross legally and commute across the border."
Gustafson continued, "Mayor Faulconer said to the President that the border does not define San Diego's relationship with Mexico. Trade does, and that’s why he’s so focused on getting the USMCA trade agreement approved by Congress. Mayor Faulconer doesn’t support a wall from sea to shining sea. Let’s invest instead on stopping sewage from the Tijuana River Valley.”
The mayor's press secretary, Ashley Bailey, told City News Service Tuesday that immigration was not discussed between the two. Faulconer was originally scheduled to meet with the White House Intergovernmental Affairs Team, before Trump heard Faulconer was in Washington and invited him to meet.
Sections of old border wall have been replaced along San Diego's border recently, including a 14-mile stretch of newly constructed primary and secondary border wall just east of Otay Mesa.