US and Mexico: More Talks, No Deal Yet to Avert Tariffs - NECN

US and Mexico: More Talks, No Deal Yet to Avert Tariffs

Without a deal, the first tariffs — 5% taxes on imports from Mexico, eventually increasing to 25% — are to go into effect on Monday

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    NEWSLETTERS

    No Breakthrough in Tariff Negotiations With Mexico

    Negotiators will return to the White House Thursday in an effort to reach a deal that would curb illegal immigration at the U.S. - Mexico border and avoid President Trump's threatened tariffs. (Published Thursday, June 6, 2019)

    U.S. and Mexican officials claim to be making progress as they labored for a second day to avert import tariffs. But President Donald Trump is still threatening to impose them as he tries to pressure Mexico into stemming the flow of Central American migrants across the United States' southern border.

    Vice President Mike Pence, monitoring the talks from his travels in Pennsylvania, said Thursday the U.S. was "encouraged" by Mexico's latest proposals but that, so far, tariffs still were set to take effect on Monday.

    He added that it would be "for the president to decide" whether Mexico was doing enough to head off the tariffs. Pence said that, among other issues, negotiators had been discussing a potential agreement to make it difficult for those who enter Mexico from other countries to claim asylum in the U.S. Mexico has long resisted that request.

    Trump has threatened to impose a 5% tax on all Mexican goods beginning Monday as part of an escalating tariff regime opposed by many in his own Republican Party.

    US to Raise Tariffs on Mexico Over Immigration Policies

    [NATL] US to Raise Tariffs on Mexico Over Immigration Policies

    Mexican authorities will attempt to negotiate with the U.S. after President Donald Trump threatened to impose steep tariffs on Mexican goods over his administration's goal to lessen immigration from Central American migrants. A 5% tariff on Mexican goods is slated to take effect Monday, with possible hikes to 25%. 

    (Published Wednesday, June 5, 2019)

    The frantic, last-minute talks underscore Trump's chaotic approach even when decisions have enormous economic consequences for both the U.S. and its closest allies. Trump has embraced tariffs as a tool he can use as leverage against other countries, dismissing the potential harm to American consumers and manufacturers.

    Traveling in Europe, Trump told reporters that negotiators had made "a lot of progress," but continued to play coy.

    "We'll see what happens," Trump said in Ireland before leaving for France to attend a D-Day ceremony. "But something pretty dramatic could happen. We've told Mexico the tariffs go on. And I mean it, too. And I'm very happy with it."

    It remained unclear whether any deal could be struck with Trump out of the country. Many in Washington still expect the tariffs to go into effect barring a major new concession from Mexico, though lawmakers who have been in talks with both U.S. and Mexican officials said they were hopeful a deal could be reached to satisfy Trump, or at least delay the tariffs' implementation.

    Mexican Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard spent several hours at the State Department Thursday morning, while Trump's legal counsel and other Mexican aides met at the White House Thursday afternoon.

    Ebrard told reporters as he left the State Department that progress was being made and that he was likely to return following consultations at the embassy. He returned in early evening.

    Trump Calls off Iran Strikes

    [NATL] Trump Calls off Iran Strikes

    President Donald Trump confirmed on Twitter Friday that he was "cocked & loaded" to strike Iranian targets, but deemed the loss of life would be disproportionate to the downing of a U.S. drone.

    (Published Friday, June 21, 2019)

    His spokesman, Roberto Velasco, tweeted that "Options continue to be explored."

    "The stance of the United States is focused on measures of migratory control, ours on development," he said.

    White House spokeswoman Mercedes Schlapp said in an interview that conversations were continuing but "it looks like we're moving toward this path of tariffs because what we've seen so far is that the Mexicans, what they're proposing, is simply not enough."

    Pence, who led the discussions Wednesday with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other U.S. officials, told reporters in Pennsylvania that the administration had "made it very clear that our neighbors to the south, Mexico, must do more to end the tide of illegal immigration that is besetting our southern border."

    During Wednesday's talks, the gulf between the countries was clear as Mexico offered small, thus far undisclosed concessions, and the U.S. demanded major action. A senior administration official said the U.S. once again pressed Mexico to step up enforcement on its southern border and to enter into a "safe third country agreement" that would make it difficult for those who enter Mexico from other countries to claim asylum in the U.S.

    But Mexico surprised U.S. officials Thursday when they returned to the negotiating table and said they would commit to what Pence had requested, according to the official, who cautioned that significant questions about timing and implementation remain.

    Watch: Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Full Opening Statement at House Hearing on Reparations

    [NATL] Watch: Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Full Opening Statement at House Hearing on Reparations

    Ta-Nehisi Coates, author of “The Case for Reparations,” testified before a House Judiciary subcommittee during a hearing on whether the United States should consider compensation for the descendants of slaves. 

    He delivered a rebuttal to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's comments that "no one currently alive was responsible for that," which Coates called a "strange theory of governance." 

    "Well into this century the United States was still paying out pensions to the heirs of civil war soldiers," he said. "We honor treaties that date back some 200 years despite no one being alive who signed those treaties. Many of us would love to be taxed for the things we are solely and individually responsible for. But we are American citizens and this bound to a collective enterprise that extends beyond our individual and personal reach."

    (Published Wednesday, June 19, 2019)

    Trump officials have said Mexico can prevent the tariffs by securing its southern border with Guatemala, cracking down on criminal smuggling organizations and overhauling its asylum system. But the U.S. has not proposed concrete metrics to assess whether Mexico is complying, and it is unclear whether even those steps would be enough to satisfy Trump on illegal immigration, a signature issue of his presidency and one that he sees as crucial to his 2020 re-election campaign.

    Beyond Trump and several White House advisers, few in the administration believe imposing tariffs is a good idea, according to officials familiar with internal deliberations. Those people worry about the negative economic consequences for Americans and believe the tariffs — which would likely spark retaliatory taxes on U.S. exports — would also hurt the administration politically. The officials were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

    Republicans in Congress have warned the White House that they are ready to stand up to the president to try to block his tariffs, which they worry would spike costs to U.S. consumers, harm the economy and imperil a major pending U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade deal .

    Democratic House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal said he will introduce a resolution of disapproval to stop the tariffs if Trump goes through with his threat, panning it as presidential "overreach."

    The Department of Homeland Security announced Wednesday that U.S. Border Patrol apprehensions of migrants illegally crossing the border hit the highest level in more than a decade in May: 132,887 apprehensions, including a record 84,542 adults and children traveling together and 11,507 children traveling alone.

    Associated Press writers Zeke Miller, Paul Wiseman, Lisa Mascaro, Darlene Superville and Padmananda Rama contributed to this report.

    Hearing on Reparations Brings Testimony from Actor, Senator, Ex-NFL Player

    [NATL] Hearing on Reparations Brings Testimony from Actor, Senator, Ex-NFL Player

    Watch actor Donald Glover, Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., and former NFL player Owens Burgess testify before a House Judiciary subcommittee hearing on whether the United States should consider compensation for the descendants of slaves.

     

    (Published Wednesday, June 19, 2019)