Top CEOs warn Trump will 'severely damage' economy by closing border


No one thinks this is a good idea.

Another day, another group of people begging Trump not to follow through with his dumb plan to close the southern border because he doesn't like immigrants. This time, it's the Business Roundtable — a group of CEOs of major American corporations — trying to explain why closing the border is a spectacularly bad idea.

The trade group wrote a letter to several members of the administration, including Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. They even cc-ed Larry Kudlow, the director of the National Economic Council — perhaps in an attempt to dissuade Kudlow from his idea to only keep the border open for big trucks.

The letter highlighted the results of a study conducted by the Roundtable finding that nearly 5 million American jobs are dependent on trade with Mexico and that over $1.5 billion in goods comes across the border every single day.

"Shutting down the U.S-Mexico border or slowing cross-border trade would severely damage the operations of American businesses and hurt American workers," wrote Business Roundtable president Joshua Bolten in the letter.

"Closing the border would back up thousands of trucks, impact billions of dollars of goods each day, cripple supply chains and stall U.S. manufacturing and business activity."

Earlier in the week, the United States Chamber of Commerce came forward and said that closing the border would have "negative economic consequences." And yesterday, the Wall Street Journal's editorial board also weighed in and cautioned against closing the border.

Even Ted Cruz thinks closing the border is a bad idea. The Republican senator said it would be "devastating" to his state of Texas if Trump follows through with his plan. Sen. John Thune (R-SD) also told reporters he thinks closing the border is a bad idea.

Maybe Trump is getting the message, as he seems to have tried to walk back his border-closing rhetoric a bit. He says, without reference to any evidence, that Mexico is now apprehending enough people at its own southern border "for the first time in decades." Of course, given how mercurial and unreasonable Trump is, he may very well walk back his own walk-back.

Nothing about the idea of closing the southern border makes sense. Of course, not making sense has never stopped Trump before — but perhaps the growing chorus of Republicans and businesspeople urging him to come to his senses will have an effect this time.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.