It was wonderful to have Valley residents and the Merced County Sheriff’s Posse in Washington, DC for Inauguration Day. It was an honor for the Merced County Sheriff’s Posse to be in the President’s Inauguration Parade, representing the people of the San Joaquin Valley.
After the inauguration, I gave the Merced County Sheriff’s Posse a tour of the U.S. Capitol Building.
If you’ve been following this week’s news, then you’ve seen that President Donald Trump has signed a number of executive orders. Some of the executive actions include withdrawing the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement, building a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, and ordering a hiring freeze for federal employees. Here is a complete list of the President’s actions during his first week in office.
Since day one of President Trump being elected, I’ve stated that I am committed to working on a bipartisan basis with the Trump Administration because Congress and the President must work together to move our country forward. However, President Trump’s first week in office has demonstrated his lack of diplomatic experience, which is greatly alarming to me and to U.S. allies. I genuinely would like to work with the President, but I will not stand-by as he works to implement policies that hurt immigrant communities, negatively impact California’s agriculture industry, and weaken our nation’s economy.
Building a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border is not a real solution to fixing our broken immigration system and does little, if anything, to improve our national security. To no surprise, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto reiterated once againthat Mexico will not be paying for the wall and cancelled next week’s meeting with President Trump. In his usual fashion, President Trump spoke without careful consideration and expressed support for a 20 percent tax on imports from Mexico to pay for the wall. If implemented, a 20 percent import tax on Mexican goods would accelerate a trade war between the United States and Mexico. We saw similar effects of these types of trade wars most recently during the U.S.-Mexico trucking dispute, which took place for seven years between 2009-2015, when Mexico legally imposed retaliatory tariffs on U.S. exports. The California agriculture industry bore the brunt of those retaliatory tariffs. If President Trump and Republicans in Congress move forward with putting a 20 percent tax on Mexican imports, then California products are likely to be immediately impacted.
In addition to the economic effects of building a wall and imposing a tax on Mexican goods, immigrant children and their families are fearful of being deported. President Trump’s executive order only further divides our country and raises alarm among immigrant families. There are nearly 750,000 young people in the U.S. receiving deportation protections and work authorization under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Many of these hard working young men and women live in our San Joaquin Valley, and they add so much value to Valley communities and our entire nation. It is shameful that President Trump is using his executive authority to scare DACA enrollees and their families.
As I stated at the beginning of this email, it is my hope to work with the Trump Administration and my Republican colleagues in Congress, and I will also stand-up for the people of the San Joaquin Valley. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to serve you in our nation’s capital.
Member of Congress