Steve Bannon: Trump’s tariff threats are working at the border

Steve Bannon: Trump’s tariff threats are working at the border

August 15, 2019 100 By Stanley Isaacs


EFFORT IN 2020. MY FIRST GUESS IS THE FORMER WHITE HOUSE CHIEF STRATEGIST STEVE BANNON ALSO JOINING US FROM THE BORDER STATE OF ARIZONA STEVE, IT’S GREAT TO HAVE YOU THIS MORNING THANKS SO MUCH FOR JOINING US.>> MARIA THANKS FOR HAVING ME ON. MARIA: YOU’VE BEEN DOING A LOT AT THE BORDER. FIRST OFF GIVE US YOUR TAKE ON WHERE WE ARE IN THIS CRISIS. WE HAVE SEEN A REAL IMPROVEMENT IN THE LAST TWO MONTHS GIVEN THE PRESIDENT’S PARTNERSHIP WITH MEXICO. HOW DO YOU SEE IT FROM ON THE GROUND?>> WELL LISTEN IT’S A CRISIS BUT PRESIDENT TRUMP, I THINK, HIS ACTIONS ARE STARTING TO HAVE A HUGE IMPACT. HE’S GOT THE DEAL WITH GUATEMALA THE SAFE HARBOR OF THE SAFE NATION DEAL WHICH IS TO LET’S SORT THE PROBLEM OUT OF THE ASYLUM SEEKERS DOWN THERE, IN THE NORTHERN TRIANGLE AND ALSO WORKED WITH MEXICO ON THE MIGRANT PROTECTION PROGRAM, NOW THAT THEY GO BACK TO MEXICO TO WAIT AND IN ADDITION, THIS THREAT OF THE TARIFFS REALLY GOT AND I CAN TELL YOU BECAUSE I’VE BEEN DOWN IN THE SOUTHERN BORDER FOR ABOUT THE LAST THREE OR FOUR WEEKS HE’S GOT THE MEXICAN MARINES AND THE MEXICAN MILITARY UP ON THE NORTHERN BORDER TO STOP THE CARTELS THIS IS ALL ABOUT THE CARTELS. THEY CONTROL THE BORDER ON THE MEXICAN SIDE. WHAT PRESIDENT TRUMP IS DOING IS TRYING TO BREAK THE BACK OF THE CARTELS AND NOW LIKE YOUR PREVIOUS GUEST SAID FROM A COUPLE OF WEEKS AGO OR LAST WEEK GETTING THAT DEFENSE MONEY THAT 2.8 BILLION PRESIDENT TRUMP AND THE ARMY CORE OF ENGINEERS ARE STARTING TO BUILD A NEW WALL AND REPLACE OLD WALL ON THE SOUTHERN BORDER SO I THINK THINGS ARE HEADING IN A POSITIVE DIRECTION, BUT THAT’S BECAUSE PRESIDENT TRUMP HAVING FOUGHT EVERYBODY FROM CONGRESS TO THE MEDIA TO THE PROGRESSIVE LEFT IS NOW IN THE CARTELS IS REALLY STARTING TO SEE REAL TRACTION. MARIA: YOU MAKE A GOOD POINT ABOUT THE DRUG LORDS WHEN WE TOOK THE SHOW TO THE BORDER A COUPLE OF MONTHS AGO I WAS STUNNED AT WHAT I WITNESSED IN TERMS OF CHILDREN BEING PUT IN THESE DANGEROUS SITUATIONS AND WHAT I WAS TOLD BY THE BORDER PATROL PEOPLE, THERE WERE KIDS CROSSING AND THIS PICTURE HERE OF AN EIGHT AND 10-YEAR-OLD THEY LOST THEIR MOTHER, AND WE WERE JUST SHOCKED AT WHAT WAS GOING ON IN TERMS OF THESE KIDS BEING PUT INTO THESE POSITIONS, BECAUSE SOME OF THEM ARE WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT THEIR FAMILY, AND THEY WERE RENTED TO THESE PEOPLE SO THAT THEY CAN LOOK LIKE FAMILIES, BECAUSE THE LOOPHOLES ALLOW THEM IN, BUT THE ISSUE IS IS THAT ONCE YOU GET CLOSE TO THE BORDER, THE DRUG LORDS WANT TO SHAKE YOU DOWN AND SAY OKAY, YOU CAN’T GO THESE EXTRA FIVE STEPS UNTIL YOU GIVE US MONEY, SO IT REALLY IS A VERY DANGEROUS SITUATION WITH THOSE DRUG LORDS.>> LOOK THESE CARTELS ARE VERY SOPHISTICATED MILITARY OPERATION THEY UNDERSTAND THAT THE HUMAN TRAFFICKING PART OF THIS, MARIA IS A HIGHER-MARGIN BUSINESS THAN EVEN THE DRUG TRAFFICKING AND THAT’S WHAT’S BEEN ALLOWED TO HAPPEN. PRESIDENT TRUMP IS TRYING TO STOP IT BUT REMEMBER THE WHOLE PURPOSE OF THE WALL IS TO GET PEOPLE TO GO THROUGH THE PORTS OF ENTRY WHERE THE RULE OF LAW TAKES PLACE AND YOU CAN SORT ALL OF THIS SITUATION OUT. THAT’S WHAT THE SOUTHERN WALL IS SO IMPORTANT. IT’S NOT A TOTAL SOLUTION BUT IT’S THE BEGINNING OF A SOLUTION , BUT YOU’RE SEE SEEING RIGHT NOW AND I THINK MEXICO AND GUATEMALA AND OTHERS UNDERSTAND THE THREAT THAT THESE CARTELS POSE TO THE CITIZENS OF NORTHERN MEXICO, TO THE CITIZENS OF GUATEMALA AND THE CITIZENS OF THE BORDER TOWNS OF THE UNITED STATES PRESIDENT TRUMP HAS TAKEN PRETTY DRAMATIC ACTION. MARIA: YOU HAVE BEEN TRYING TO WORK WITH PRIVATE PROPERTY OPENERS TO BUILD WALL WHERE YOU CAN AWAY FROM THE GOVERNMENTS EFFORTS RIGHT? TELL US WHAT YOU’RE DOING, STEVE>> WELL THE ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS, REMEMBER PRESIDENT TRUMP IS BUILDING LIKE 1,200 MILES WORTH OF WALL AND THERE ARE CERTAIN SECTORS WHERE THE ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS HAVE DEEMED IT TOO DIFFICULT AND WE’VE BUILT OUR FIRST AMOUNT OF WALL ACTUALLY DOWN IN EL PASO SECTOR, IN THE MOST DANGEROUS PART WHICH IS THE BORDER PATROL POSTS THE MOST DANGEROUS PART REALLY GOING UP THE SIDE OF A MOUNTAIN. WE HAVE STOPPED THE ENCOURAGEMENT 100% SINCE WE BUILT THE WALL. I’M DOWN IN ARIZONA THIS PRIVATE GROUP AS WE BUILD A WALL THAT THE HERO, THE AIR FORCE VETERAN, HAS FOUND THAT WE’VE RAISED ABOUT $25 MILLION I’M DOWN IN ARIZONA WE’RE IN THE RIO GRANDE VALLEY WE’VE HAD ABOUT 30 DIFFERENT PRIVATE LAND OWNERS APPROACH US NOW, THEY SEEN OUR WALL IN NEW MEXICO AND ACTUALLY HELP THEM, THESE ARE AREAS WHERE THE ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS HAS DETERMINED THESE ARE NICHES. WE’RE A NICHE PLAYER, PRESIDENT TRUMP IS BUILDING LONG RUNS OF WALL ON THE SOUTHERN BORDER RIGHT NOW. MARIA: THIS OF COURSE IS A CAMPAIGN PROMISE THAT THE PRESIDENT IS KEEPING. I WANT TO ASK YOU ABOUT THE STATE OF PLAY FOR 2020 GOING INTO THIS INCREDIBLE ELECTION THAT WE HAVE, UP UNTIL JUST ABOUT A MONTH AGO, A LOT OF THE PRESIDENT’S SKEPTICS, OR THE DEMOCRATIC HOPEFULS HAVE BEEN CALLING IT A MANUFACTURING CRISIS. YOU’VE SEEN THE DEMOCRAT CONTENDERS. WHO DO YOU THINK IS MOST POISED TO BE A REAL THREAT TO PRESIDENT TRUMP?>> I SAID THIS LAST WEEK, MARIA , I DON’T SEE ANYBODY ON THAT STAGE RIGHT NOW THAT CAN TAKE PRESIDENT TRUMP ONE ON ONE. I PRIDE MYSELF, HE’S CALLING HIS STAR PUPIL, HIS TOP PUPIL I’VE BEEN STEADY STUDYING THIS THOROUGHLY AND I DON’T CARE WHAT THE POLLS SAY ON BIDEN. JOE BIDEN IS NOT A STANDUP TO DONALD TRUMP. HE’S WEAK ON CHINA, YOU’VE SEEN WHAT HE’S SAID THE LAST COUPLE OF DAYS. IF THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY THINKS THAT JOE BIDEN IS GOING TO BE ABLE TO GO ON WITH DONALD TRUMP IN THE GENERAL ELECTION CAMPAIGN THEY’VE GOT ANOTHER THING COMING HE WILL RUN THE TABLES ON BIDEN. NOW THE SECOND TO YOUR CANDIDATE S OR THE OTHER CANDIDATES LIKE KAMALA HARRIS, ELIZABETH WARREN I JUST HAVEN’T SEEN IT YET. I HAVEN’T SEEN IT ON THAT STAGE AND I CERTAINLY HAVEN’T SEEN IT IN IOWA WHERE I THINK THEY ARE TAKING A VERY UNSOPHISTICATED APPROACH TO CHINA. I JUST HAVEN’T SEEN IT. I DON’T BELIEVE AND I SAY THIS I’M NOT SO SURE THAT HIS OPPONENT HAS EVEN DECLARED YET. I THINK YOU GOT TO WATCH GUYS LIKE HILLARY CLINTON, BLOOMBERG, MICHELLE OBAMA, A WHOLE WRATH OF POT THAT LOOKS VERY CLOSELY TO SEE BECAUSE THE DEMOCRATS NUMBER ONE FOCUS IS TO DEFEAT DONALD TRUMP, SO I’M NOT SO SURE THERE’S A CANDIDATE UP THERE, CERTAINLY NOBODY ON THAT STAGE TAKES ON TRUMP ONE ON ONE. MARIA: SO YOU THINK MICHELLE OBAMA, HILLARY CLINTON OR MICHAEL BLOOMBERG CAN STILL COME INTO THIS RACE?>> OH, I THINK THERE’S GOING TO BE AMPLE OPPORTUNITY TO COME INTO THIS RACE LATER IN NOVEMBER , DECEMBER, EVEN WHEN THE PRIMARY STARTS. MAYBE A CANDIDATE CAN’T WIN THE PRIMARY SEASON BUT THEY CAN TAKE IT INTO CONVENTION. LOOK, THE DEMOCRATS ARE GOING TO BE VERY FOCUSED ON ONE THING. THIS IS WHY TOM STYRE JUMPED IN SO LATE TWO WEEKS AGO. THE DEMOCRATS ARE FOCUSED ON DEFEATING DONALD TRUMP. THEY REALIZE UNLIKE THE REPUBLICAN ESTABLISHMENT, HE’S A HISTORIC FIGURE AND A TRANSFORMATIVE PRESIDENT. THEY WANT TO JUST LIKE IN 2018 THEY ARE TOTALLY FOCUSED LIKE ON THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, THEY ARE FOCUSED ON DEFEATING TRUMP. THAT’S WHERE THEY WANT TO GO AND I’VE GOT TO TELL YOU, IN THE