In a recent op-ed in the Washington Examiner, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) has a message to the American people and the federal government: Don’t bend to Mexican intimidation tacts over trade, as the title is aptly named.
After U.S. Trade Representative was warned by American trade groups that an investigation into unfair Mexican trade practices could result in tariffs in return, Rubio’s is arguing that this strategy is not only an incorrect, but it will not stand.
“For Mexico to threaten U.S.-based producers to stave off relief for American fruit and vegetable growers would be outrageous at any time. But today’s threats are not just offensive — they are also absurd. Years ago, when international markets were relatively stable, it may have been possible for Mexico to replace its imports of American wheat, soybeans, pork, or other products. That is no longer the case,” stated Rubio.
If Mexico’s trade practices were investigated, they would lose political leverage to influence the American fruit and vegetable market. This is why Rubio would go on to say, “Mexico does not want those practices to be challenged nor brought to light, because they are a source of political leverage. They provide influence over sectors of the American economy and aspects of U.S. policy. But as we learned during the pandemic, overreliance on foreign nations for basic necessities is a severe vulnerability. That is especially true when it comes to food,” states Sen. Rubio.
During the 2016 election, trade with foreign nations was a stump-speech issue for the Trump campaign. At that time at nearly every debate, rally, interview, then-candidate Trump would highlight the significant trade deficit that the United States has accumulated annually.
Similarly, Rubio will face off in a heavyweight matchup for his Senate seat against Rep. Val Demings (D-FL) on November 8th.