Mexican Tariff Tiff’s Backstory Includes 2016 Election Interference
President Trump has announced a 5 percent tariff on all Mexican goods exported to the United States, escalating in proportion to Mexico’s ineffectiveness in solving the border crisis. By October 1, the tariff would rise to 25 percent. Whatever one thinks of these tariff threats, a key element of the backstory is going unreported in the establishment media.
When Mexican president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) got word of Trump’s tariff plan, he dispatched his foreign secretary Marcelo Ebrard to Washington. Ebrard is a former mayor of Mexico City and presidential candidate, but there is more to the man.
As Ebrard told Francisco Goldman of The New Yorker, the Mexican politician became “committed to direct political action” to get Hillary Clinton elected in 2016. Ebrard had previously worked with Voto Latino and other groups in California, Arizona, Florida and elsewhere. The prospect of an presidential election victory for candidate Donald Trump, whom Ebrard compared to Adolph Hitler, prompted the Mexican’s work for the campaign of Hillary Clinton. This election interference by a foreign national failed to emerge during the 2016 campaign and prompted no investigation.
Americans might imagine if former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, a Trump supporter, had compared AMLO to Benito Mussolini and campaigned openly, on Mexican soil, for his political rivals. Then picture President Trump sending Giuliani to Mexico to lecture them about human rights, social problems, and immigration policy. Such actions would have made the news and sparked protests from Mexico.
Last year, Mexicans abroad sent back home a record $33.48 billion to Mexico, an increase of 10.5 percent from 2017. Remittances of that magnitude would be impossible without massive inputs from American taxpayers. Beyond tariffs and border policy, the two countries have plenty to talk about. Given that reality, it is important that Mexico’s chief negotiator be someone who did not interfere in the 2016 U.S. election.
Marcelo Ebrard should stay in Mexico and develop policies that expand economic opportunity for the Mexican people.