Trump sends Perino into near meltdown
By John Bender
Donald Trump's claim that as President he would build a wall between Mexico and the U.S. and make Mexico pay for it has the political establishment fuming. Dana Perino, co-host of The Five on Fox News was practically foaming at the mouth over the idea.
Perino is an ayatollah of the Bushiban who offers little to the show except regurgitated establishment talking points and mindless defense of anything any Bush says or does. .On Tuesday Perino had the following exchange with co-host Eric Bolling'
Mr. Bolling said Trump "was not afraid to take shots at other countries. He took shots at China. He certainly took shots at Mexico. You heard the comment about they send us not their best. But he said I'm going to build a wall on our southern border. I know how to build walls. He said and they are going to pay for it."
Perino grew red-faced and shot back, "Right, on what planet is that actually true? Do you think you can make Mexico pay for a permanent wall between Mexico and the United States? You can do that?"
Mr. Bolling said, "I think that Donald Trump—there's no question you can build a wall."
Perino grew more agitated and shrieked, "And you're going to build a wall and make Mexico pay for it? On what planet could that actually happen?"
Mr. Bolling calmly replied, "I think it could happen," adding, "one of the ways you do it, you tax them."
Perino, now just short of meltdown, ranted, "You tax Mexico? The president of the United States is going to tax Mexico to get a wall for the United States of America? I'm pointing out the U.S. absurdity of a lot of these comments. I get it that he's entertaining. I know that he loves America. He's done a lot of great things. He also has done things without ever having to work with 535 members of Congress who actually control the purse strings in America. When you're the president of the United States, you have no money unless the Congress says here's what you can spend it on. So you certainly don't have Mexico's money to make them pay for a wall between the two countries."
Perino obviously has no idea that according to Banco de Mexico remittances from Mexicans living in the U.S. to Mexico are about 6 billion dollars per quarter. That is more than the country's tourist income and foreign investment income. It is second only to oil sales in their foreign income. Nor does she know that current laws would allow the president regulate these transactions and/ or impose fees on these transactions. Under current forfeiture law the administration can confiscate these funds with no court order or other authorization.
Also, tourism from the U.S. is a major part of the Mexican economy. The president has numerous tools to drastically cut that tourism. Plus, these items only scratch the surface of how a U.S, president could, on his own, force Mexico to pay for building a wall.
Of course, none of this is a Bush talking point so it I beyond Perino's expertise. More to the point, since none of this is something a Bush or someone from the Bush wing of the Republican Party would do, Perino will never embrace it or admit a U.S. president has these powers.
John Bender is a freelance writer living in Dallas, Texas. He is a former staff writer for EtherZone.com and his columns have appeared in various print and internet publications. His work has been cited by Rush Limbaugh and he has been a guest on various radio talk shows including the David Gold Show, the Mark Davis Show, and the Armstrong Williams show.