House Dem resolution affirms US-Mexico ties

House Dem resolution affirms US-Mexico ties
© Haiyun Jiang

House Democrats are moving to strengthen U.S.-Mexico ties amid tensions between President TrumpDonald John TrumpKoch-backed group launches six-figure ad buy against Heitkamp Anti-abortion Dem wins primary fight Lipinski holds slim lead in tough Illinois primary fight MORE and his Mexican counterpart.

Reps. Eliot EngelEliot Lance EngelDems accuse Trump officials of seeking State Department purge Congress thinks big to tackle a defining crisis of our times 140 House Dems urge Trump to impose Russia sanctions MORE (N.Y.), Albio SiresAlbio B. SiresChao confirms Trump pushing Ryan to withhold Gateway project funding Fox's Wallace: 'It's a mistake' for Dems to boycott State of the Union WHIP LIST: Dems boycotting Trump’s State of the Union MORE (N.J.) and Joaquin CastroJoaquin CastroGOP leaders back second special counsel Dem lawmaker: Trump is purging anyone who isn’t 'blindly loyal' House Armed Services leaders urge Trump to boost State's foreign propaganda fight MORE (Texas) introduced a resolution on Tuesday “reaffirming a strong commitment” between the two nations.

“This resolution sends a clear message to President [Enrique] Peña Nieto and the Mexican people that we will not allow the Trump Administration’s reckless diplomacy to define our partnership with Mexico,” Engel said in a statement. 

“I urge President Trump to reverse course immediately so that our relationship can get back on track,” added Engel, the ranking member on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Castro said Trump’s treatment of Mexico resembles the president’s “reckless, bullying behavior towards our allies” in general.

“Mexico has been the target of the President’s attacks since the beginning of his campaign,” he said in a statement.

“We feel it important to reassure Mexico, an important economic and security partner, that we deeply value our nations’ cooperation. The President’s actions do not reflect Congress’s commitment to our close ally.”

Tuesday’s resolution comes amid friction between the Trump and Peña Nieto administrations.

The U.S. and Mexico denied reports last week that Trump told Peña Nieto on a call that U.S. forces would handle the “bad hombres down there” if Mexican authorities could not.

“Reports that the president threatened to invade Mexico are false,” a White House official said on Feb. 1. "Even the Mexican government is denying these reports.”

“The assertions that you make about said conversation do not correspond to the reality of it,” Mexico’s foreign relations department said in a statement.

The Associated Press first reported Trump’s talk with Peña Nieto last week, citing an excerpt of a transcript from a Jan. 27 phone call.

“You have a bunch of bad hombres down there,” Trump told Peña Nieto, per the report.

“You aren’t doing enough to stop them. I think your military is scared. Our military isn’t, so I just might send them down there to take care of it.”

Peña Nieto and Trump have also repeatedly clashed over who will pay for a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, a cornerstone of Trump's presidential campaign.