Mexico Must Be Held Accountable for Cartels, Says DeSantis
By MARK LORENZANA
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said Saturday, May 13, that Mexico “must be held accountable” for the “damage that Mexican drug cartels have done to the United States.”
“These Mexican cartels are killing a lot of Americans,” DeSantis told a packed audience in Sioux Center, Iowa, where he attended Republican Representative Randy Feenstra’s third annual Family Picnic.
“They must be treated like the hostile force that they are. We must hold the cartels accountable and the Mexican government accountable because they have allowed a lot of this to happen.”
A potential Republican candidate for the 2024 U.S. presidential election, DeSantis likewise sounded off on Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) for “criticizing Florida’s laws against illegal migration.”
“We have this Mexican president who is criticizing Florida for enacting laws against illegal migration. It looks to me like he has a disaster on his hands,” said DeSantis. “He has totally out-of-control drug cartels running his country. And all the millions of people who come to the United States, they are all passing through his country. What kind of country allows millions of people to cross like this?”
López Obrador has, in the past, questioned DeSantis’ and several Florida legislators’ anti-immigrant policies.
“What would happen if this trade partnership did not exist between Mexico and the United States? Already in Mexico there are auto-parts plants for the US military industry. How can we not have a relationship? How would your economy function without ours?” AMLO said. “And another question, and this also goes for the governor of Florida — who is in the same position, also from the Republican Party — also doing politicking on the eve of campaigns: What would happen in the United States if migrants did not work?”
DeSantis said Saturday that, if given the chance, he would close down the southern border to restore order, just days after the lifting of Title 42 “has unleashed chaos there” — and urged President Biden to “put us in.”
“I’d shut down the border immediately — why are we letting this happen? It’s hurting people. You deserve to have a secure border, you deserve to have a rule of law,” he said. “Don’t tell me foreigners can just decide to come across the border when they want to. We decide who comes into this country as Americans. We have every right to have that border secured and not have this disaster unfolding.”
Addressing U.S. President Joe Biden, DeSantis said, “We’ll get cracking on this wall, Joe. Put us in, we’ll get it done.”
DeSantis likewise mentioned the ways Florida, which he described as a “maritime border state,” has dealt with the immigration crisis, including banning sanctuary cities and providing state personnel to help the U.S. Coast Guard combat migrant vessels attempting to reach the Sunshine State.
“Since August, we’ve repatriated over 12,000 illegal aliens back to Haiti and some of these countries. And guess what happens? They stop coming. We don’t have as many boats coming,” DeSantis said.