Mick Mulvaney, White House Chief of Staff, said Sunday that President Donald Trump’s threat to levy a 5% tariff on Mexican goods over immigration enforcement is not an empty one.
Trump is hoping to force the Mexican government to step up enforcement of illegal immigration on the southern side of the border.
“He is absolutely, deadly serious,” Mulvaney said. “I fully expect these tariffs to go on to at least the 5 percent level on June 10.”
According to Mulvaney, the White House has been working with the Mexican government for months, demanding that the Mexican government lend a hand in the border crisis, and pushing immigration forces to turn away “caravans” of migrants from Central America.
Mulvaney claims that the border is in an “emergency situation” and the U.S. will no longer tolerate the lack of attention from Mexican officials.
The 5% Tariff Will Go Into Effect This Week and Continue to Increase
The 5% tariff will go into effect this week and will continue to increase if the Mexican government continues to refuse help. According to White House officials, it will go up to “10 percent on July 1; 15 percent on Aug. 1; 20 percent on Sept. 1; and 25 percent on Oct. 1.”
Democrats accused Trump of starting an unnecessary trade war, and are insisting that the “border crisis” is of Trump’s own making, with administration policies that are forcing border patrol officials to detain more asylum seekers and immigrants than ever before.
Mexican President Insists That They Have Already Ramped Up Enforcement
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador “hinted his country could tighten migration controls to defuse U.S. President Donald Trump’s threat to impose tariffs on Mexican goods,” according to a report from The Associated Press.
Lopez Obrador insisted that the Mexican government has already ramped up their immigration enforcement. He plans on engaging the White House in talks this week.
“The main thing is to inform about what we’re already doing on the migration issue, and if it’s necessary to reinforce these measures without violating human rights, we could be prepared to reach that deal,” Lopez Obrador said. “We’re doing all we can to reach a deal through dialogue. We’re not going to get into a trade war, a war of tariffs and of taxes.”