Central American migrants are shutting down the U.S.-Mexico border because border officers are forced to process the migrants instead of transport trucks, White House acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney told ABC news on Sunday.
Why are we talking about closing the border? Because not for spite and not to … undo what’s happening but to simply say look, we need the [officers] from the ports of entry to go out and patrol in the desert where we don’t have any wall.
Mulvaney blamed Democrats for the impending closures and suggested the president has no choice, despite rising pushback by business:
We hate to say we told you so but we told you so. We need border security and we’re going to do the best we can with what we have. The Democrats will not give us any additional money to do this, they won’t give us any additional people, and importantly, they will not change the law that is acting as this giant magnet for people from South and Central America to come into this country.
It is clear that Democrats are not going to help us. So it shouldn’t surprise anybody that we’re turning to what some folks might think extreme measures. Because the way it’s supposed to work is not working. We’re supposed to fix this by changing the laws. Democrats won’t do that so we’re looking at cutting off aid [to Central American countries] and closing the borders.
“Congress can fix the problem of immigration they failed to fix,” White House counselor Kellyanne Conway told Fox News Sunday. “We are in a meltdown. We are at the breaking point,” she added. “Congress must act … and we need to send a message back to these countries too.”
The statements follow a Friday threat by Trump to close the border:
Trump threatens to close parts of US-Mex border if Mexico won't block the Central American migration. But Mex. likely sees this as a bluff — b/c the US estb. will shriek, unite & fight Trump to preserve the inflow of cheap labor & cheap goods from Mex. https://t.co/71X9vQym7H
— Neil Munro (@NeilMunroDC) March 29, 2019
Roughly 100,000 migrants are expected to legally turn themselves in at the border this month — including perhaps 50,000 youths and children — while many additional migrant men are expected to illegally slip past guards and then reach blue-collar jobs in U.S. cities. By October, border officials fear that one million migrants will accept Washington’s tacit invitation to live and work in the United States.
The tacit invitation is the refusal by the establishment in Washington — including GOP leaders — and by progressive judges to shut or even narrow the various loopholes in the border. The loopholes allow migrants to be released to get jobs once they ask for asylum — even when they have little chance of winning asylum and even when they tell border officials that they are migrating in search of jobs.
Five million Central Americans may accept the establishment’s invite in 2019, according to data in a 2018 Gallup survey.
Democrats are so determined to preserve the loopholes that they describe the migration as a humanitarian crisis, even though the migrants say they are seeking jobs and crime has dropped in Central American countries.
Open-border judges also are fighting to keep the loopholes, partly by striking down new border reforms even before a trial on the merits and partly by slow-walking the legal process.
Investors and business groups lobby to preserve the loopholes because the migration provides them with more workers, consumers, and renters — plus a political distraction from Trump’s popular Four Pillars immigration reforms.
This flood of poor and uneducated migrants is flowing into blue-collar jobs, blue-collar schools, and blue-collar neighborhoods, but the white-collar media focus their cameras on migrant children and their articles on migrants’ stories.
This flood of new labor adds to the inflow of people who illegally overstay their visas in 2019. It also adds to the inflow of one million legal migrants and roughly one million visa-workers, such as H-2B laborers and H-1B college graduates. Together, this huge wave of at least two million legal and illegal workers will help employers avoid another set of wage raises in 2019, following the popular four percent boost to blue-collar raises in 2018 created by Trump’s low-immigration “Hire American” policy in 2017 and 2018.
Trump has the authority to stop legal migration but has not exercised that power, likely because it would anger the business donors that he needs in 2020
Mulvaney also pressured Mexico to help shut down the increasingly large and blatant population movement through Mexico:
We need Mexico to solidify its southern border, we need — we need the — the northern triangle countries to do more about not allowing their people in Mexico. They could help us. We need them to do that. If not, it makes very little sense for us to continue to send them aid.
Mexico’s president is signaling he will cooperate. “We are going to help, to collaborate,” President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said Friday. “We want to have a good relationship with the government of the United States. We are not going to argue.”
The prospect of border closures is prompting quick and sharp protests from business groups, including the business groups which employ many illegal aliens. The Washington Post reported Sunday:
“First, you’d see prices rise incredibly fast. Then . . . we would see layoffs within a day or two,” said Lance Jungmeyer, president of the Fresh Produce Association of the Americas in Nogales, Ariz. “This is not going to help border security.”
In Laredo, business leaders and elected officials held frantic conference calls over the weekend about the threatened closure. Gerry Schwebel, executive vice president of the international division of Laredo-based IBC Bank, said U.S.-Mexico traffic has occasionally been restricted, but only temporarily and only in the event of emergencies, such as floods, tornadoes or security checks after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
Even a border slowdown could create shortages of goods and services and lead to higher prices for consumers, he said, adding: “If you want to create an economic crisis, then shutting down the border will create an economic crisis.”
Each year, roughly four million young Americans join the workforce after high school or university. The federal government then imports roughly 1.1 million legal immigrants, refreshes a resident population of roughly 1.5 million white-collar guest workers and roughly 500,000 blue-collar visa workers, and it also tolerates about eight million illegal workers.
In 2019 — because of catch-and-release rules mandated by Congress and the courts — the federal government also will likely release at least 350,000 migrant Central American laborers into the U.S. job market even as at least 500,000 more migrants sneak past U.S. border defenses or overstay their visas.
This federal policy of using legal and illegal migration to boost economic growth for investors shifts enormous wealth from young employees towards older investors by flooding the market with cheap white-collar graduates and blue-collar foreign labor.
This cheap labor economic policy forces Americans to compete even for low wage jobs, it widens wealth gaps, reduces high tech investment, increases state and local tax burdens, hurts kids’ schools and college education, pushes Americans away from high-tech careers, and sidelines millions of marginalized Americans, including many who are now struggling with fentanyl addictions.
But Trump’s “Hire American” policy has crimped the supply of new workers, so allowing blue-collar Americans to get a four percent wage increase in 2018.
Goldman Sachs says Trump's tight labor-market policy (AKA 'Hire American') gave 4% raise to blue-collar/middle-class in 2018. But upper-income graduate salaries lagged – maybe b/c of 1.5 million visa-worker graduates who work for spaghettiOs & green cards https://t.co/g6jtv9BS81
— Neil Munro (@NeilMunroDC) March 14, 2019