Watch: GOP congressman faceplants as he dodges questions on Trump’s promise Mexico would pay for border wall
Rep. Michael Burgess (R-TX) on MSNBC (screengrab)

A Republican congressman from Texas became tongue-tied trying to explain why Mexico was not paying for Donald Trump's border wall.


Rep. Michael Burgess (R-TX) was interviewed by Chris Hayes on MSNBC's "All In" on Thursday.

"The latest polling data does not look good for the president's attempt to shift the blame for the government shutdown," Hayes reported. "His approval ratings back down to all-time lows with 43 percent of voters blaming him for the shutdown. According to another poll this month, 69 percent of Americans don't think the Trump's border wall is priority, but soon to be minority Republican caucus in the House is still all-in on the idea."

The host played three clips from the campaign trail in 2016 of Trump's constantly repeated promise that Mexico would pay for his wall.

"So, I don't get it, why are we shutting down our government to get our taxpayer more for the wall that Mexico is going to pay for?" Hayes asked.

"Well, first off, this is not the final act in this drama and the wall is the first step, the pay for part may well come later," Burgess replied. "I'd be perfectly in favor of taxing remittances to Mexico and Central America to pay back the American taxpayers, but right now the issue is border security and the president is exactly correct, exactly correct to focus there."

"What you're saying is America should float Mexico a loan for the wall that the president promised they should pay for," Hayes noted. "It was a crystal clear promise."

Hayes continued to focus on the promise Trump made that Mexico would pay for his wall.

"Why won't Mexico pay for it?" he asked again.

After some back-and-forth, Hayes again tried to ask about Trump's signature campaign promise.

"But why can't you get Mexico to pay for the wall?" he repeated. "You keep asking the American people to pay for something that the president promised."

"You're getting distracted," Burgess interrupted.

"I am not," Hayes replied. "Congressman, the president said it hundreds of times. I watched him every night at every rally. He said Mexico will pay for it, the people rally said Mexico would pay for the wall and everyone cheered."

"Get Mexico to pay for the wall if you want a wall so bad," he declared.

"And they will. And they will," Burgess replied. "That's the final step in this process."

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