Trump rode into the White House on a wave of racism and xenophobia by scapegoating undocumented immigrants for all of the country’s problems.
He blamed Latinos for disappearing jobs in manufacturing and mining, even though both sectors are actually shrinking due to automation and outsourcing.
His proposed border wall – which has seen zero progress like the rest of his promises – is an obscene idea that would do nothing but waste taxpayer money.
Now, the bill for Trump’s bigotry has come due.
According to Bloomberg, Kansas farmers are panicking as more and more of their predominantly Latino workforce is being deported.
“Two weeks ago, my boss told me, ‘I need more Mexicans like you. I said, ‘Well, they’re kind of hard to find,” a young Mexican immigrant employed on a Kansas farm told Bloomberg.
The employment rate is high in many farming counties in Kansas, which forces farm owners to compete over an ever-dwindling labor pool.
Over 41,000 people were arrested by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in the first one hundred days of Trump’s presidency alone.
Trump’s hateful speech has also led to a decrease in immigrants entering the country, exacerbating the problem.
“The threat of deportation and the potential loss of our workforce has been very terrifying for all of us businesses here,” Trista Priest, the chief strategy officer for Cattle Empire told Bloomberg.
Ironically, her company is situated in a district in which 77% of the electorate voted for Trump.
A previously released statement from the American Farm Bureau Federation, America’s largest farm organization, reinforces the Bloomberg report.
The AFBF says that if Trump fulfills his campaign promise to deport every undocumented worker, agricultural output could plummet by as much as $60 billion.
As a result, food prices could rise by 7% across the country.
The overwhelming consensus is that Trump’s attacks on undocumented workers might make for effective election season rhetoric, but it makes for terrible economic policy.
In his rush to place the blame for economic woes at the feet of Latinos, Trump is devastating America’s agricultural heartland.
What’s required is smarter, more compassionate immigration reform, not blanket arrests and deportations.
Oftentimes these workers do jobs that native born Americans can’t or won’t. We need their help to keep this country running.