Texas Democratic congressman Joaquín Castro slammed President Donald Trump’s plan to impose tariffs on all goods coming to the U.S. from Mexico, calling them economic sanctions that will “tank our economy.”
“Congress cannot allow this president to tank our economy and our relationships with our neighbors to further demonize immigrants fleeing violence,” Castro said in a statement issued Friday.
Castro, who is also the chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, said the move would invite reciprocal tariffs, compounding economic harm. Imposing the economic sanctions won’t improve Trump’s leverage with Mexico or Congress, but would be a “disaster”, he said.
Trump has threatened to impose a 5 percent tariff on all goods coming from Mexico — which includes many auto parts used to finish auto manufacturing in the U.S. and many other goods — to force Mexico to clamp down on immigration.
Castro noted that Mexico is the No. 1 trading partner of his home state of Texas.
He called on Texas Republicans to publicly oppose the threat.
Texas’ two senators, John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, 23 of its U.S. House members and every major state elected officeholder is Republican, not including judges.
Cornyn spokesman Jeff Guittard said the senator "supports the president’s commitment to securing our border, but he opposes this across-the-board tariff which will disproportionately hurt Texas.”
Trump has been pressuring Mexico to crack down on migration through its southern border with Guatemala, saying that tariffs would rise monthly to as high as 25 percent unless Mexico “substantially stops” the number of migrants entering the U.S.
Rep. Castro said “increasing the costs of goods on Americans will not solve the dire humanitarian situation in Central America.”
"We are a nation of immigrants," added Castro. "President Trump cannot, and will not rewrite that history.”