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NYT: 'Mexico Agreed to Take Border Actions Months Before Trump Announced Tariff Deal'
Posted by: Steve G.
Date: June 08, 2019 05:25PM
Mexico Agreed to Take Border Actions Months Before Trump Announced Tariff Deal
[www.nytimes.com]
By Michael D. Shear and Maggie Haberman
June 8, 2019

WASHINGTON — The deal to avert tariffs that President Trump announced with great fanfare on Friday night consists largely of actions that Mexico had already promised to take in prior discussions with the United States over the past several months, according to officials from both countries who are familiar with the negotiations.

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 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.

Mr. Trump hailed the agreement anyway on Saturday, writing on Twitter: “Everyone very excited about the new deal with Mexico!” He thanked the president of Mexico for “working so long and hard” on a plan to reduce the surge of migration into the United States.

It was unclear whether Mr. Trump believed that the agreement truly represented new and broader concessions, or whether the president understood the limits of the deal but accepted it as a face-saving way to escape from the political and economic consequences of imposing tariffs on Mexico, which he began threatening less than two weeks ago.

Having threatened Mexico with an escalating series of tariffs — starting at 5 percent and growing to 25 percent — the president faced enormous criticism from global leaders, business executives, Republican and Democratic lawmakers, and members of his own staff that he risked disrupting a critical marketplace.

After nine days of uncertainty, Mr. Trump backed down and accepted Mexico’s promises.

Officials involved with talks said they began in earnest last Sunday, when Kevin K. McAleenan, the acting secretary of homeland security, met over dinner with Mexico’s foreign minister. One senior government official, who was not authorized to speak publicly about the closed-door negotiations that took place over several days, insisted that the Mexicans agreed to move faster and more aggressively to deter migrants than they ever have before.

Their promise to deploy up to 6,000 national guard troops was larger than their previous pledge. And the Mexican agreement to accelerate the Migrant Protection Protocols could help reduce what Mr. Trump calls “catch and release” of migrants in the United States by giving the country a greater ability to make asylum-seekers wait in Mexico.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/08/2019 05:27PM by Steve G..
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Re: NYT: 'Mexico Agreed to Take Border Actions Months Before Trump Announced Tariff Deal'
Posted by: Speedy
Date: June 08, 2019 06:43PM
Winning!



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.
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Re: NYT: 'Mexico Agreed to Take Border Actions Months Before Trump Announced Tariff Deal'
Posted by: Ombligo
Date: June 08, 2019 09:33PM
It's a great deal easier to win when you know the outcome in advance



“No persons are more frequently wrong, than those who will not admit they are wrong.”
-- François de La Rochefoucauld

"WE CALL BS!" -- Emma Gonzalez
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Re: NYT: 'Mexico Agreed to Take Border Actions Months Before Trump Announced Tariff Deal'
Posted by: deckeda
Date: June 08, 2019 09:35PM
Perfecto

And of course, unsurprising.
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Re: NYT: 'Mexico Agreed to Take Border Actions Months Before Trump Announced Tariff Deal'
Posted by: pdq
Date: June 10, 2019 12:25AM
Krugman’s column is timely:

Quote

I’d like to make an important announcement to New York retailers: NEW JERSEY HAS AGREED TO IMMEDIATELY BEGIN BUYING LARGE QUANTITIES OF WHITEFISH SALAD FROM OUR GREAT PATRIOT GOURMET MARKETS.

What’s that you say? There was no such agreement? New Jersey doesn’t even have any kind of centralized purchasing mechanism for food products? I say fake news! Conspiracy by the deep state!

O.K., you know that I’m not serious. But Donald Trump was serious when he tweeted this:



This tweet raises two immediate questions:

1. Why, like so many Trump tweets, does it read like a bad translation from the original Russian?

2. What the heck is he talking about?

There was, after all, no mention of agricultural products in the statement of agreement. And Mexico, while a big buyer of U.S. farm goods, is a market economy: private businesses, not government officials, decide how much Iowa corn Mexico will buy in a given year.

...think about what just happened.

First, Trump recently negotiated a trade deal with Mexico — a deal barely different from the previous deal, which Trump called the “worst in history,” but put that on one side. The whole point of trade deals is that they’re supposed to provide some certainty. The USMCA, like NAFTA, amounts to a promise by all three participants that they won’t arbitrarily impose new barriers to cross-border trade.

Then Trump went ahead and threatened major new tariffs on Mexico [anyway].

Krugman draws a few obvious conclusions that foreign trade negotiators are learning about the US, first and foremost being Don’t trust us. But they’re also learning fast how to handle Trump, and that’s not necessarily to our benefit or even in furtherance of Trump’s stated aims.

BTW, did you see that China says it’s trade surplus with the US increased in May (over April) to nearly double that expected?

facepalm
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Re: NYT: 'Mexico Agreed to Take Border Actions Months Before Trump Announced Tariff Deal'
Posted by: deckeda
Date: June 10, 2019 09:25AM
They’ll trust us again the minute the moron is gone.
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Re: NYT: 'Mexico Agreed to Take Border Actions Months Before Trump Announced Tariff Deal'
Posted by: Steve G.
Date: June 10, 2019 09:37AM
[www.politico.com]
The Times responded to Trump's earlier attacks on their reporting Sunday morning, declaring that they were standing by their story. "We are confident in our reporting, and as with so many other occasions, our stories stand up over time and the president's denials of them do not," the paper said in a tweet, adding that "Calling the press the enemy is undemocratic and dangerous."
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