President Donald Trump urged Mexico to take control of its country from the drug cartels Tuesday and suggested that his tariff threat is already paying off.
Trump last week announced that he is going to place a 5% tariff on all Mexican goods starting June 10 if the country does not help the U.S. deal with the scourge of illegal immigration across the southern border. The tariffs will increase by 5% each month that Trump determines Mexico has not met his goals. (RELATED: Trump Plans To Impose Tariffs On Mexico Until They Help With Illegal Immigration)
“In recent days, Mexico has stepped up apprehensions and deportations of Central American migrants,” Fox News’ John Roberts noted during a press conference with Trump and Prime Minister Theresa May. “This could possibly be in response to your threat of tariffs.”
“Not possibly be,” Trump replied, indicating that he thinks the threat is working.
The president went on to criticize people who claim Mexico is not able to curb illegal immigration because the country is largely controlled by the cartel, indicating that the Mexican government needs to take responsibility.
“Mexico shouldn’t allow millions of people to try and enter our country and they could stop it very quickly,” Trump said. “I don’t want to hear that Mexico is run by the cartels and the drug lords and the coyotes. I don’t want to hear about that.”
“Mexico should step up,” he concluded.
As of March, illegal immigration to the U.S. was on track to reach its highest level in a decade. The stunning increase has been driven in large part by Central Americans trekking through Mexico and to the U.S. in order to claim asylum from their home countries.