Trump’s border shutdown would hit avocados, beer and cars

Mr. Trump initially aimed his ire over the border situation at Mexico, saying he would shut things down unless America's southern neighbor began to do more to stop the surge of migrants from Central America traversing its territory en route to the U.S.

Approximately 11,000 to 12,000 commercial trucks cross the border at Nogales daily, laden with about 50 million pounds of produce such as eggplants, tomatoes, bell peppers, lettuce, cucumbers, and berries, he said.

Trump has also been told by some advisers that it would be extremely hard to operationally shut down the border, but he has told them to move forward with looking at ways to achieve the feat.

The U.S. auto industry imports $59.4 billion worth of parts from Mexico while exporting $32.5 billion worth of parts to assembly plants in Mexico. Over the Thanksgiving holiday previous year, Trump claimed he'd already "closed the border" after officials briefly closed the northbound lanes at San Ysidro, California, for several hours in the early morning to bolster security because of concerns about a potential influx of migrant caravan members.

"Any action that stops commerce at the border would be harmful to the USA economy, and in particular, the auto industry", Blunt said.

USA authorities have also ramped up the controversial policy of returning migrants back to Mexico while they wait out their asylum claims. "So if we get closer to Thursday or Friday and Wall Street starts to teeter, that's when you might really think this may actually happen", Blackburn-Dwyer said.

That was a sign of efforts within the administration to slow-walk and minimize the impact of Trump's renewed threat last week to seal the border, and quickly.

The President is still weighing the decision, despite being warned by aides about the consequences of shutting down the border.

But the recent surge of families and other migrants trying to cross into the USA has led Trump to call for even more immediate steps, with his focus in recent days shifting to closing down the border.

More news: Brexit: UK MPs push to prevent no-deal in law

"Wait times in Brownsville (Texas) were around 180 minutes, which were two times the peaks of past year", said a senior DHS official on a call with reporters.

Trump has told advisers that he would close the ports of entry and reallocate the border-patrol agents to other parts of the country.

Trump has used a similar approach before with trade negotiations and even in the run-up to the government shutdown previous year.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders on Tuesday, asked about the economic impact of closing the border, said "it's not our first choice".

Trump complained that the US has the 'worst, dumbest immigration system in the world, ' and he said he's lobbying congressional Democrats to change it.

He has struck a softer tone this week, praising Mexico for taking a "big step over the past two days" and detaining "large numbers" of irregular migrants from Central America trying to reach the United States.

Some of those parts are critical like seat belt anchors and engine components. But Trump has so far refused to back down.

According to the CBC and Statistics Canada, the total value of goods imported to Canada from Mexico, much of which comes via land crossings, totalled $1,781,900 in January. That includes the speeding up of the surge of at least 750 officers to assist US Border Patrol along areas of the southern border and the immediate expansion of the department's policy of returning asylum-seekers to Mexico.

There are "900,000 people this year coming without any legal right to stay", she added, the source noted.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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