Editor’s note: This letter was written and submitted via mail prior to President Trump’s agreement with Mexico to not impose tariffs in exchange for Mexico working harder to slow immigrants coming through Mexico from Central and South America.
Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution gives the Congress power to collect duties, excises, imposts, tariffs and taxes. Since 1917, Congress has given the President more power to enforce tariffs (taxes) on imports (goods coming into a country).
During 1962, Congress passed Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act (law) giving the President the power to enforce those tariffs in certain situations.
This has to be based on a recommendation fromthe U.S. Secretary of Commerce if an article
or product being imported into the U.S. in such quantities or under such circumstances as to threaten or impair national security.
On May 30, 2019, President Donald Trumpannounced he would impose a 5% tariff on all imports from Mexico staring on June 10, 2019.
This would increase to 10% on July 1, another 5% each month (up to 25%) afterward until such time illegal immigrants coming through Mexico and into the U.S. stop.
Apparently President Trump was just responding to curb illegal immigration in the U.S. without much success within the past two years. He has tried many other measures to try to stop this problem, to no avail.
The federal courts have stopped many of his measures trying to curb illegal immigration.
The Congress can pass laws to prevent this problem, but the majority of the Democrats in the House of Representatives have refused to do anything.
As expected, the President of Mexico strongly criticized this tariff and immediately set up a meeting between the two countries trying to resolve this problem.
Hopefully, the outcome of this meeting will help slow down illegal immigration into the U.S.
Silvestre Moreno Jr. Mercedes