Mexico Consol discusses Trump politics in U.S Election

The Consulate General of Mexico in Seattle, Eduardo Baca Cuenca, visited Shoreline Community College as part of the Global Affair Center’s Western Hemisphere series last Thursday. Cuenca discussed trade between the U.S. and Mexico, Mexico’s role as a leader in Central America, and the history behind Mexico’s territory.

After the event however, Cuenca weighed in on Donald Trump’s anti-immigration rhetoric.

“Politicians are saying a lot of things that aren’t true,” said Cuenca. “You can’t just point to one fact and say ‘whoa, 300 jobs went to Mexico because they closed a factory in such and such a place.’ It’s not that simple.”

Cuenca said Trump has made statements in the past about air conditioning employees losing jobs to outsourced workers. He said that while it is true that American citizens have lost jobs, Trump’s statements simplify economic problems in the U.S.

“Certainly the U.S. has not fared well in some of these situations and neither has Mexico but Mexico is still taxed for these companies and the companies still pay the U.S.”

While reducing outsourcing has been a point of Trump’s campaign, he has also said he intends to deport millions of undocumented immigrants and build "the greatest wall the U.S. could ever build" on the Mexican border.

Former Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, who endorsed Trump’s campaign in February, claimed that taxpayers spend an excess of $52 billion annually educating illegal immigrants.

While many republican politicians have demanded anti-immigration action, Cuenca said immigrants are an important part of the U.S. economy and the U.S. would be “shooting itself in the foot” if it deported every illegal immigrant living in the U.S.

“By far, immigrant labor is the backbone of the agricultural sector of this country and makes the U.S. agricultural sector competitive worldwide,” Cuenca said. “I don’t think it would be a wise decision for anyone.”

Students and staff at Shoreline have expressed similar concern toward Trump’s politics.

“More than half my family are immigrants,” said Itzell Rollovillarreal, Club Representative of the Alliance for Latin American Students (ALAS) at Shoreline, ”All of my friends are immigrants… If all the illegal immigrants in this country left, then who would do their work?”

Jamie Ardeña, the Director of the Multicultural Center said that although he is indifferent to the political process in the U.S., he believes men like George Bush, Ronald Reagan, and Trump have used fear tactics throughout history to gain votes and doesn’t see that changing any time soon.

While Cuenca made it clear that Trump’s politics could be potentially detrimental to the U.S. economy, former Mexican President Vincente Fox has also vocalized his opinion of the man, saying last month that he was “not going to pay for a fucking wall”.

George Samura, another student at SCC also weighed in. “He’s like Kanye, totally unpredictable.”

The event on Mexico’s relationship with the United States was hosted by Larry Fuell, the Director of the Global Affairs Center. For more information about Fuell’s Western Hemisphere series, email [email protected]

_Randy Hatfield

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