Trump Reportedly Visiting Otay Mesa Tuesday, But Mayor’s Office Not Yet Told

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Candidate Donald Trump speaks at the San Diego Convention Center in May 2016. Photo by Chris Stone

By Ken Stone

Updated at 2:40 p.m. March 7, 2018

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President Donald Trump will visit San Diego to see his Mexican border wall prototypes on March 13, according to several media reports. But a spokesman for Mayor Kevin Faulconer says San Diego hasn’t yet been informed.

“We do not have details about his visit,” said Greg Block, senior press secretary for the mayor’s office.

Block told Times of San Diego via text message that he’s “seen the reports,” but hasn’t been informed of visit details.

Wednesday morning, an Associated Press reporter in Washington tweeted that Trump is “supposed to make his inaugural trip to California next week.”

Citing Federal Aviation Administration “guidance,” reporter Zeke Miller said: “Safety notice preceding formal NOTAM/TFR advises 3/13 visit to San Diego (where he’s expected to view border wall prototypes). Appears to be staying overnight in LA (with fundraiser expected).”

NOTAM/TFR refers to travel flight restrictions for airspace where Air Force 1 would presumably travel. NOTAM stands for “notice to airmen.”

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But the TFR website lists no alert for that time, and regional FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said about 2:10 p.m. Wednesday: “If we have implemented a TFR, it will be posted there. If no TFR is posted there, then we haven’t implemented one yet.”

CNN and other news outlets said White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders confirmed a California trip next week but had no other details.

The Washington Post reported last week that Trump plans to visit the San Diego area to view the eight 30-foot-tall border wall prototypes erected in Otay Mesa. But the trip will also include a Republican National Committee fundraiser in Los Angeles, The Post reported.

The trip will be Trump’s first to California since taking office.

Asked why it has taken Trump so long to visit the state, Sanders said, “I think it’s because he’s been busy growing the economy, creating jobs, defeating ISIS, remaking the judiciary.”

Confirmation of the trip came on the heels of a lawsuit filed against California by the U.S. Department of Justice challenging a trio of state laws that offer protections to people living in the country illegally. Trump has been openly critical of the state’s political leaders and policies.

“They’re doing a lousy management job, they have the highest taxes in the nation and they don’t know what’s happening out there. Frankly it’s a disgrace, the sanctuary city situation, the protection of these horrible criminals,” Trump said last month.

The wall prototypes represent the signature promise of Trump’s campaign: To build a “big, beautiful wall” along the U.S.-Mexico border.

He has so far been unsuccessful in his attempts to have Mexico pay for the wall, as he had promised, nor has he been able to secure $18 billion for the project from Congress, which would pay for 300 miles of new barriers and the replacement of 400 miles of existing fencing, according to The Post.

Fox 5 San Diego, citing unnamed “White House officials,” earlier reported that Trump would inspect the border wall prototypes Tuesday near the Otay Mesa port of entry.

“Trump is expected to attend a Republican fundraiser in Los Angeles” as well, Fox said.

— City News Service contributed to this report.

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