Kansas’ junior U.S. Senator is concerned about the state’s agricultural farmers after billions of dollars in goods were halted for over a week due to the abrupt closure of two Texas train crossings.
According to US Senator Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), following intensive scrutiny and repeated appeals from Republican leaders, US Customs and Border Protection said on Friday, Dec. 22, that train operations in Eagle Pass and El Paso, Texas, will restart immediately.
“Monday’s rash decision stranded millions of dollars of goods, many from Kansas, on the tracks just before Christmas.” “We immediately began demanding answers from CBP and explaining the ramifications of this decision on international commerce,” stated Sen. Marshall.
“We shared the stories we were hearing from our Kansas agriculture, rail, and automotive industries about the detrimental impact the railroad closure was having on their bottom line.”
Marshall expressed his concern that foreign trade and American livelihoods will be overlooked.
CBP abruptly shuttered the El Paso and Eagle Pass rail crossings on Monday, according to the Senator. The move stymied international trade and stranded millions of dollars in goods, notably agricultural commodities grown in the Sunflower State. This harmed Kansas farmers’ bottom lines just before the holidays.
Since Monday, railroads have had to store more than 100 train sets, equivalent to more than 100,000 rail cars and 10 million tons of commodities and cargo, according to Marshall. With a projected $855.1 billion in trade in 2022, Mexico is one of the country’s major export markets. In 2022, rail traffic to and from Mexico through Eagle Pass and El Paso was worth $33.95 billion.
Meanwhile, the Senator stated that Mexico is Kansas wheat’s main export destination. Rail transports over 70% of the wheat exported to Mexican flour mills. Oil and natural gas products, motor vehicles, and petroleum and coal products are among the top exports to Mexico.
Finally, Marshall stated that the United States shipped more than $2.6 billion in soybeans and more than $4.7 billion in maize to Mexico in 2021.