Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump would like the American people to believe that Mexicans are smuggling drugs into the United States “at a record clip,” but a recent analysis by the folks at the Washington Post found the Don doesn’t really know what he is talking about when it comes to the drugs being shipped across the border.
During Sunday night’s presidential debate in St. Louis, Trump said, “We’re also letting drugs pour through our southern border at a record clip. At a record clip. And it shouldn’t be allowed to happen.”
Although most people watching at home likely swallowed this claim without even questioning its validity, the latest statics from U.S. Customs and Border Protection shows the flow of drugs into the United States is actually on the decline. In fact, over the past five years, border agents have seized fewer drug shipments than ever before—from around 2.5 million pounds in 2011 to somewhere around 1.5 million pounds just last year.
Most of this decline can be attributed to the veritable castration legal marijuana states have given the drug cartels by making Mexican weed no longer a hot commodity in the eyes of the American consumer. As HIGH TIMES’ own cultivation editor, Danny Danko, told NPR back in 2014, “American pot smokers prefer American domestically grown marijuana to Mexican grown marijuana,” because the potency of the herb is vastly superior.
Border agents are now also seizing less cocaine now than they did five years ago. And even though the cartels are pushing more heroin into the United States, Christopher Ingraham of the Post says Trump’s “record clip” comment is still not an accurate statement because customs reportedly seized more brown dope in 2015 than in previous years.
The only drug that lends some credibility to Trump’s latest claim is methamphetamine. The latest U.S. Customs and Border Protection report shows that three times as much meth has been spotted coming across the border since 2011.
Interestingly, while Trump has proposed building a wall across the U.S.-Mexico border to prevent drugs from being smuggled onto American soil, some of the news stories to emerge over the course of the past year shows that drug traffickers have no problem engineering creative methods for getting drug shipments to their required destination.
Just last month, Mexican police found a couple of homemade bazookas near Arizona that that they believe had been used to catapult drugs across the border. And several times this year, police have discovered underground tunnels designed for drug smuggling.
In short, Trump’s wall is not likely to be as effective at controlling the drug problem in the United States as all of his supporters would like to believe.