President Trump tweeted the threat on Friday morning. When Trump visited with troops stationed in Iraq on Wednesday, he also told reporters he was willing to continue with the government shutdown until funding for his border wall is sorted out. The partial government shutdown has been effective for a week and there are no breakthroughs to end it in sight. The Senate is scheduled to hold a pro forma session on Monday.
The House will be comprised of a Democratic majority on January 3. In the Senate, Republicans will enjoy a greater majority. The success of Democratic efforts to reopen the government in 2019 is unclear with the Republican Senate.
President Trump tweeted about how the US loses to Mexico in NAFTA and says closing the border will generate profit for the US. He continued to tweet about the negative effects of NAFTA on the US auto industry, specifically how NAFTA sent companies and jobs to Mexico.
He did not stop there but proceeded on to tweet about the thieving schemes of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. He articulated another migrant caravan in Honduras preparing to come to the US as well. Because of how much money these countries take without giving to the US, President Trump said the US will cut off aid to said countries. The possibility of this occurring is unlikely as Congress has the final signature on any reduction of aid to countries and Democrats are taking over the House in January.
Closing the border is equally preposterous an announcement. The director for the Wilson Center’s Mexico Institute, Duncan Wood, informed CBS MoneyWatch closing the border would lead to multi-billion dollar losses. According to CBS News, approximately $558 billion in goods were exchanged between the US-Mexico border in 2017. Mexico is a prominent trading partner with the US. 69% of all southern border freight worth $34.7 billion entered the US from Mexico on trucks. A total of goods valued at $400 million crossed the border via pipeline, $1.3 billion by air, $5.9 billion by ship, and $6.8 billion by train. Legal US citizens also use the border for crossing back into the US.
The border cannot be closed to satisfy the whims of an angry and frustrated President. The border wall was among Trump’s promises during his presidential campaign. The little headway he is making with this in addition to him being unable to completely bar refugees and migrants from entering the country is resulting in more and more empty Twitter threats that are not at all feasible legally and economically.
Featured Image via Flickr/U.S. Customs and Border Protection