Known as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the deal would effectively prevent the US from imposing new auto tariffs on the other two nations.
Abandoning his threat to immediately seal the southern border, President Donald Trump warned instead on Thursday that he'd slap tariffs on cars coming to the USA from Mexico unless the country does more to stop the flow of migrants and drugs coming to the U.S.
"Closing legal points of entry would harm American commerce and legal transit between Mexico and the United States, and leave coyotes and human traffickers to roam free in the wilderness of our unsecured border". "And if that doesn't stop the drugs, we close the border", Trump said.
But he also said Mexico was working to change the situation. In an interview on "Fox & Friends" Thursday morning, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Trump was making the trip so that Americans will "get a chance to see some of the things that are going on, on the ground and hear from the people dealing with this crisis day in and day out". "But if in a year from now drugs continue to pour in we're going to put tariffs on", he said, adding: "I don't play games".
Republican Sen. Ted Cruz from the border state of Texas warned that closing the border would be "devastating" to the economy. "I am not kidding around", he said then, exasperated by the swelling numbers of migrants, thousands of whom were being released into the USA because border officials had no space for them. "That is about three days now, I guess, since frankly since they heard I was going to close the border". As for the hundreds of thousands of tourists and workers who cross the border legally, Kudlow said, "that may be hard".
Responding to Trump's threats, Nielsen rushed home late Monday night from Europe, where she was attending G7 security meetings and meant to fly to the border mid-week to assess the impact of changes already made, including reassigning some 2,000 border officers assigned to check vehicles to deal with migrant crowds and new efforts to return more asylum seekers to Mexico as they wait out their case. The president will also hold a roundtable with local law enforcement officials. However, Mr. Trump said that he cares more about USA security than about the trade agreement. But this is a renovated section of an already existing barrier that had been ordered to be built under the Obama administration.