By Jon Dougherty
Mexican President AndrÃ©s Manuel LÃ³pez Obrador, better known as AMLO to his people, is already having difficulties keeping campaign promises of more government spending on socialist-style infrastructure and benefits while curbing the power and deadly reach of the various cartels that literally rule portions of the country.
Now he has to contend with a new 5 percent tariff on all goods shipped to the U.S., thanks to the Trump administration’s decision to impose it after AMLO’s government has failed (refused?) to stop tens of thousands of mostly poor migrants from streaming through his country enroute to the United States.
And that’s one economic bridge too far for the Leftist president.
Shortly after POTUS Trump imposed the new tariff, AMLO sent a letter to him quickly seeking a diplomatic meeting on Friday in order to work on a solution.
“Mexicoâ€™s President Lopez Obrador asks Trump to have U.S. officials meet with the Mexican foreign minister in Washington on Friday to seek a solution that benefits both nations,â€ Reuters reported.
JUST IN: Mexico's President Lopez Obrador asks Trump to have U.S. officials meet with the Mexican foreign minister in Washington on Friday to seek a solution that benefits both nations https://t.co/FqaPR9apcm pic.twitter.com/onyEIhklic
— Reuters (@Reuters) May 31, 2019
The letter comes after POTUS Trump said the tariff would begin June 10 and would steadily increase over the subsequent months if illegal immigration — that is, if the Mexican government continues to allow the migrant caravans free access through the country — continues.
“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 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,â€ POTUS tweeted earlier.
Some 100,000 illegal aliens are gaining access to the U.S. via a gigantic loophole in our asylum law that Democrats (and too many Chamber of Commerce Republicans) refuse to address legislatively.
Not only that, but POTUS has been hampered time and again by federal courts, including one that just ruled he could not use $6 billion in non-earmarked, unspecified Pentagon funds to build sections of border wall under his national emergency declaration (see our video on that here).
Out of options, POTUS and his White House team of advisers are getting creative: Hitting the Mexican government where it hurts most, in its pocketbook. And again, at a time when a Leftist, though well-meaning, president is trying to find ways to fiscally deliver on his campaign promises.
Mind you, this could not have been an easy decision for POTUS. One of his signature accomplishments thus far is his successful renegotiation of NAFTA. Though our Congress and the legislatures of Canada and Mexico have yet to approve the deal, it is now in danger of being scuttled, at least by Mexico, over these new tariffs.
Also, he’s willing to risk price increases for some U.S. goods (albeit slight) for American consumers to get the problem addressed.
Clearly, the president has prioritized his issues: He wants illegal immigration controlled more than he wants a new NAFTA, at least for the time being.
He certainly has Mexico’s attention now.
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