Just hours after President Donald Trump announced successful negotiations to avoid placing 5% tariffs on all Mexican goods imported into the U.S., The New York Times reported that most of the measures already had been agreed to months ago.
That information may help to better explain the context behind Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s sarcastic response after Trump’s Friday announcement, in which Schumer declared, “This is an historic night!”
Trump has been tweeting nonstop since he declared on Friday that Mexico had agreed to “take strong measures to…stem the tide of Migration through Mexico” in exchange for Trump’s promise not to levy the new tariffs at midnight on Monday. Trump began threatening to place tariffs on Mexican goods -starting at 5% and then increasing monthly by 5%-nine days ago.
In several tweets on Friday and Saturday, Trump criticized reporting on the deal as “Fakers” and “Bad News,” he cited National Border Patrol Council President Brandon Judd declaring the deal a “game changer,” and he thanked Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador for the effort.
“Everyone very excited about the new deal with Mexico!” he added.
But if the Times report is accurate, Trump got nothing new out of the arrangement, he just managed to secure a promise by Mexico to speed up the activities.
Friday’s joint declaration says Mexico agreed to the “deployment of its National Guard throughout Mexico, giving priority to its southern border.” But the Mexican government had already pledged to do that in March during secret talks in Miami between Kirstjen Nielsen, then the secretary of homeland security, and Olga Sanchez, the Mexican secretary of the interior, the officials said.
The centerpiece of Mr. Trump’s deal was an expansion of a program to allow asylum-seekers to remain in Mexico while their legal cases proceed. But that arrangement was first reached in December in a pair of painstakingly negotiated diplomatic notes that the two countries exchanged. Ms. Nielsen announced the Migrant Protection Protocols during a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee five days before Christmas.
And over the past week, negotiators failed to persuade Mexico to accept a “safe third country” treaty that would have given the United States the legal ability to reject asylum seekers if they had not sought refuge in Mexico first.
Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy breaks the whole thing down:
Trump is such a fraud.