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Feature 030716 Canto

Monday, March 7, 2016

Donald Trump and How Not to get Mexico to Pay for that Wall

By Silvio Canto Jr.

Donald Trump is calling for a wall that Mexico will pay for.  It’s the greatest campaign line since Barack Obama promised to close Gitmo and make us respected again!

Mr. Trump is apparently going to negotiate our foreign aid (primarily military assistance to fight the cartels) and erase the current trade deficit of $58 billion.

What happens to U.S. companies exporting over $200 billion to Mexico when we get into a trade war?  Mr. Trump does not say!

Does Mr. Trump understand that any change in trade with Mexico will immediately impact Canada?  The answer is NAFTA.  Canada is our largest trading partner – a $700 billion relationship!

Again, Mr. Trump does not say, and don’t you dare ask one of his supporters for an explanation.  You will just get an earful of how all of our politicians are idiots, and only Mr. Trump knows the way forward!

Like much of Mr. Trump’s agenda, saying that Mexico will pay for the wall sounds good, but reality is always more complicated, as my late father used to say.

Would Mexico pay for a wall?  It might.  Mexicans just don’t want to hear a brash presidential candidate say so in public.

Over the years, I have spoken to serious Mexicans who understand that the U.S.-Mexico border is a mess.  Some have even admitted that the Mexican government has lost effective control of the area, especially all of those little towns.  The cartels run these towns.  They own the police chief and intimidate the citizens.  It’s just hard for the president of Mexico to say so in public.

A few days ago, we heard the story that “El Chapo” had traveled to the U.S. a couple of times over the last year.  His daughter told the media that her dad bought his way out and back to Mexico.  It is an amazing story that proves the point that much of the Mexico side of the border is under cartel control.

Let me suggest a couple of things to Mr. Trump:

Wouldn’t it make more sense to negotiate the payment of the wall in private?

I’ve argued for years that Mexico would actually benefit from having a wall.  It will shut down the stuff going south, from guns to cartels walking across the border with bags of cash.

The wall will probably drive cartels to find alternate routes or use water or air to supply their U.S. customers.  Am I the only one who thinks that water or air routes will be more difficult for cartels?

The wall will also discourage Central Americans, or more recently Cubans, from using Mexico as the pathway to Texas or California.

My guess is that Mr. Trump is beating up Mexico because of the anger over illegal immigration.

However, isn’t illegal immigration a bit more complicated than blaming Mexico?  Also, didn’t someone say that half of illegals are people who flew in and overstayed their tourist visas?

Mexico pay for the wall?  It’s actually more realistic than you think.

Maybe Mr. Trump should revisit his bestselling book about making deals.  Didn’t he write something about never putting the other guy in a no-win situation?

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

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This commentary was first published by American Thinker, on Mar. 6, 2016.  Silvio Canto Jr. is the host of "Canto Talk" (www.blogtalkradio.com/cantotalk/).

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