Meanwhile, a Republican revolt escalates against Trump’s tariffs threat. Yesterday at a private lunch with White House and Department of Justice officials,Republican Senators warned the officials of their opposition to impose tariffs on Mexico, fearing its impact on the U.S. economy and the American consumer. This came just hours after the president said in a press conference in London (pictured above) that the Republicans would be “foolish” if they tried to stop him.
Today, White House officials, led by Vice President Pence, will meet face-to-face with Mexico’s foreign minister to discuss Trump’s demands. The White House is downplaying expectations of the high-level meeting, saying they do not expect a deal to emerge with Mexico.
Concurrently, automakers have declared the tariffs on Mexico could cost their major suppliers billions of dollars, likely causing a recession in Mexico and threatening a recession in the U.S. Despite this, today Trump repeated a false claim that the tariffs won’t impact Americans.
Even traditional pro-business Republican groups have announced their strong opposition to the tariffs to include Americans for Prosperity, an organization backed by the Koch network who sent a letter to Congressional leaders on Tuesday calling the proposed tariffs “the largest tax hike in modern history” and saying, “it’s time for Congress to do its job”, meaning stop this foolishness.
Alex Nogales, president and CEO of NHMC, released the following statement:
“It is incredible that Trump should try to force Mexico to solve our problems at the border, using Mexico’s financial and workforce resources to do it and punishing it with tariffs if it doesn’t. Trump’s effort to slap Mexico with tariffs is an abuse of his presidential power and an abuse of a country that is our closest southern neighbor and our second largest trading partner.
Migration is a monumental problem. Mexico has long been struggling to cope with migrants coming from mostly Central America – people who have been forced to flee their home lands from violence, war, famine and poverty, and take on a perilous journey in hopes for a safer life and better economic opportunities. We cannot fault them for their aspirations.
So trying to force Mexico to go at it alone is shortsighted. Trying to stop migrants from crossing Mexico’s borders and traveling to the U.S. is not going to happen. As many of our leaders have counseled, Mexico and the United States have to invest in those countries a marshall-like plan to stop the lawlessness, the violence, and create infrastructure and employment so that people don’t have to leave their countries and put their lives in limbo and in peril.
Doug Mills/The New York Times