On Thursday’s edition of Fox & Friends, Fox News chief national correspondent Ed Henry insisted to viewers that President Donald Trump’s southern border wall is being built, despite multiple contradicting reports. Trump’s campaign then used his segment to insist that Democrats are wrong when they say there’s no new wall being built.
On September 19, Henry talked to the Fox & Friends co-hosts about his trip to the border wall, where he interviewed Trump. He reported that his visit was “fantastic” and chided the Democrats who appear on the show and say “the president is not telling the truth” when Trump says there’s new wall being built. Henry continued, “I’m here to say the president is right and they are wrong, and that’s not an opinion, that’s from my reporting with my own two eyes. … There is, in fact, miles and miles of new wall being built.”
Despite Fox News’ repeated insistence that “miles and miles of new wall” have been built, reports from other outlets suggest otherwise. A September 18 report from NBC news fact-checked Trump’s claim, reporting that while “the U.S. has replaced or reinforced 66 miles of fencing, including 9 miles of new secondary fencing,” the Trump administration “has yet to extend the border wall,” as suggested by Fox.
Additional reporting from The Washington Post on September 6 also fact-checked a September 4 claim by Trump that “the wall is being built. It’s going up rapidly. ... We’re building very large sections of wall.” According to the Post, “The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has completed just about 60 miles of ‘replacement’ barrier during the first 2½ years of Trump’s presidency, all of it in areas that previously had border infrastructure.” The Post also cited a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) spokesperson who said that the most up-to-date total is “approximately 64 miles of new border-wall system in place of dilapidated designs.” And in late July, Fox News itself reported that the CBP has confirmed that “the Trump administration has not installed a single mile of new wall in a previously fenceless part of the U.S.-Mexico border in the 30 months since President Trump assumed office.”
Despite the numerous reports that contradicted Trump, Henry still insisted that it’s the Democrats who are lying, and Trump’s campaign ran with it. After the Fox & Friends segment aired, the Trump War Room Twitter account (run by Trump's campaign) tweeted, “Wow! Report from Fox News confirms Democrats are WRONG,” citing Henry’s assertion that “miles and miles of new wall [are] being built.”
UPDATE 9/19/19: On September 19, Henry retweeted a Twitter user who insisted that “if the wall is replacing bad fencing...such as this...then it is a NEW wall. Get over it.”