Trump Vows Tariffs on Countries Aiding Illegal Immigration at Raucous Arizona Rally

At a campaign event in Arizona, Donald Trump threatened to impose tariffs on countries, including China, that do not curb the flow of undocumented immigrants to the U.S. He criticized President Joe Biden's recent asylum ban, promised harsher measures if reelected, and faced challenges due to sweltering heat at the rally.


Reuters | Updated: 07-06-2024 06:16 IST | Created: 07-06-2024 06:16 IST
Trump Vows Tariffs on Countries Aiding Illegal Immigration at Raucous Arizona Rally
Donald Trump

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said on Thursday he may impose tariffs on countries, including China, that do not curb the flow of undocumented immigrants from their territory to the United States, if he wins the U.S. election in November. Trump made the remarks at an event in the border election battleground state of Arizona while responding to an audience question and did not specify the size of tariff he would impose in such a scenario.

Asked about ways he would curb the flow of migrants crossing into the U.S. illegally, Trump said: "We have tremendous economic power." Trump said if a country, such as China, does not help to curb the flow of immigrants into the U.S., "we have these things called tariffs." Trump warned if other countries do not help to reduce it, then he could "tariff the hell out of that country" if re-elected.

Border security and immigration have emerged as top issues for Americans in the run-up to the Nov. 5 election where Trump will face U.S. President Joe Biden, a Democrat, in a rematch of their 2020 White House contest. The majority of people crossing into the U.S. illegally are from Latin America. According to U.S. government data the U.S. Border Patrol arrested more than 27,000 Chinese migrants caught illegally crossing the border with Mexico from Oct. 1, 2023-April 30, 2024, part of a sharp increase in Chinese arrivals.

It was Trump's first campaign event since a Manhattan jury on May 30 found him guilty on all 34 counts he faced of falsifying business records to cover up a $130,000 payment his former lawyer Michael Cohen made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels before the 2016 election for her silence about a sexual encounter she says they had. Trump has denied any wrongdoing and vowed to appeal the verdict. On Thursday he called the trial "rigged".

Trump lambasted Biden's latest effort to crack down on people crossing America's southern border illegally, an asylum ban similar to restrictions Trump tried to implement when he was president. Biden took executive action on Tuesday that instituted a broad asylum ban on migrants caught illegally crossing the U.S.-Mexico border.

Trump claimed Biden's new plan was "outrageous" and a concession of "death and defeat" at the border, even though the Biden measure mirrored Trump-era policies to deter would-be migrants. Biden has toughened his approach to border security as immigration has emerged as a major political problem for him.

Trump made a hardline stance on immigration a centerpiece of his administration and has vowed a wide-ranging crackdown if reelected. Under Biden's order, migrants caught crossing illegally could be quickly deported or turned back to Mexico under the measure, which took effect on Wednesday.

There are exceptions for unaccompanied children, people who face serious medical or safety threats and victims of trafficking, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said. Trump called Biden's measure "bullshit", eliciting a chant of "bullshit" from his friendly audience in Phoenix. Trump said he would rescind Biden's measure on his first day in office if reelected.

Trump claimed without evidence that Biden's asylum ban would allow a minimum of 2 million "illegal alien border crossers" into the U.S. each year. Asked how Trump reached that figure, Trump's campaign did not immediately respond.

U.S. Border Patrol arrested some 2 million migrants crossing illegally in the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2023, and the country has seen similar figures this year. But Biden's latest move aims to reduce attempted crossings, not maintain current levels. Trump also said he could move U.S. troops stationed abroad back home to patrol the southern border.

Biden has pushed unsuccessfully for months to pass a Senate bill crafted by a bipartisan group that would toughen border security but Republicans rejected it after Trump opposed it. Kevin Munoz, a Biden campaign spokesman, said in a statement: "Donald Trump blocked the toughest, fairest bipartisan border legislation in a generation. He did it because he thinks it will help him politically". Munoz added Trump's role in killing the bill allows him to claim the immigration system is "broken".

Several people were seen being taken out on stretchers from Trump's event due to heat exhaustion after lining up for hours in temperatures approaching 110 degrees Fahrenheit (43 degrees Celsius).

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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