President Trump will impose tariffs of up to 25 percent on Mexican imports if the kleptocracy south of the border doesn’t stop the flow of illegal immigrants traversing its territory to get to the United States.
Trump announced the trade penalties in a tweet late Thursday afternoon just after he posted video of more than 1,000 illegals surging across the border in the El Paso sector in the wee hours Wednesday. It was the largest group ever apprehended.
And Trump also announced that the administration will rewrite asylum rules as another means to discourage the invasion.
“On June 10th, the United States will impose a 5% Tariff on all goods coming into our Country from Mexico, until such time as illegal migrants coming through Mexico, and into our Country, STOP,” the president tweeted.
“The Tariff will gradually increase until the Illegal Immigration problem is remedied ... at which time the Tariffs will be removed. Details from the White House to follow.”
Those details are in a statement at the White House website, which opened with a candid assessment of the border crisis and Mexico’s role in helping foment it.
“For decades,” the president said, “the United States has suffered the severe and dangerous consequences of illegal immigration. Sadly, Mexico has allowed this situation to go on for many years, growing only worse with the passage of time.”
The situation is “from a safety, national security, military, economic, and humanitarian standpoint” a “grave disaster.” And the American taxpayer, the president said, “bears the extraordinary financial cost imposed by large-scale illegal migration.”
Now he said, “Mexico must step up and help solve this problem.”
Invoking the Emergency Economic Powers Act, which many would argue is an unconstitutional grant of power from Congress to the executive, Trump imposed a multi-tiered tariff:
If the illegal migration crisis is alleviated through effective actions taken by Mexico, to be determined in our sole discretion and judgment, the Tariffs will be removed. If the crisis persists, however, the Tariffs will be raised to 10 percent on July 1, 2019. Similarly, if Mexico still has not taken action to dramatically reduce or eliminate the number of illegal aliens crossing its territory into the United States, Tariffs will be increased to 15 percent on August 1, 2019, to 20 percent on September 1, 2019, and to 25 percent on October 1, 2019. Tariffs will permanently remain at the 25 percent level unless and until Mexico substantially stops the illegal inflow of aliens coming through its territory. Workers who come to our country through the legal admissions process, including those working on farms, ranches, and in other businesses, will be allowed easy passage.
If Mexico fails to act, Tariffs will remain at the high level, and companies located in Mexico may start moving back to the United States to make their products and goods. Companies that relocate to the United States will not pay the Tariffs or be affected in any way.
Trump said Mexico has enriched itself in its dealing with the United States, not least with jobs moving south across the border, and so if Mexico doesn’t cooperate, “the sustained imposition of Tariffs will produce a massive return of jobs back to American cities and towns. Remember, our great country has been the ‘piggy bank’ from which everybody wants only to TAKE.”
Politico reported yesterday that Trump will also adjust the rules that govern applications for asylum. The new rules would block applications from illegals who live in another country other than their own before they arrive here.
Thus, migrants traveling through Mexico would not be permitted to apply. “U.S. law allows refugees to request asylum when they arrive on U.S. soil, but has long included an exemption for those who have already emigrated to a safe country,” Politico noted.
Free-traders and open-borders advocates are aghast, of course, and will most likely immediately file suit to stop the asylum change if not the tariff. Leftist subversives persuaded the federal courts, backed by the U.S. Supreme Court, to block Trump’s last effort to adjust asylum policy.
The policy is “extreme,” one told Politico, because it would block all Central Americans from applying for asylum.
Wrote Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador, “How did a country of fraternity for all the migrants in the world become, from night to dawn, a ghetto, a closed space.” After all, he added, “the Statue of Liberty is not an empty symbol.”
AMLO, as he is known, did offer to help pay for the care, feeding, and other costs of the more than half-million illegals, almost all Central Americans, he permitted to cross Mexico to get to the United States.
Image: Olivier Le Moal via iStock / Getty Images Plus