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Trump to make quick trip to Mexico before immigration speech

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at Xfinity Arena.

EVERETT, Wash. » In a surprise move, Donald Trump will travel to Mexico on Wednesday to meet with President Enrique Pena Nieto, just hours before the Republican delivers a highly anticipated speech on immigration.

Trump took to Twitter on Tuesday night to say he looks “very much forward” to meeting with the Mexican leader. Pena Nieto’s office confirmed the meeting with its own tweet, saying the two men would meet privately.

The unexpected trip comes as Trump seeks to clarify his stand on illegal immigration, a contentious issue that has been a centerpiece of his Republican presidential campaign. Trump has long called for deporting people currently living in the U.S. illegally and building a wall along the country’s border with Mexico.

But in meetings recently with Hispanic supporters, Trump has suggested he could be open to changing the hardline approach he outlined during the GOP primaries. After one such roundtable this month, his new campaign manager said Trump’s stance on deportations was “to be determined.”

In the days since, Trump and his staff have broadcast varied and conflicting messages, with Trump himself saying one day he might be open to “softening” his stance, and days later saying he might, in fact, be “hardening.”

Pena Nieto has been sharply critical of Trump’s original immigration policy, particularly the Republican’s insistence that Mexico would pay for the border wall. In a March interview, Pena Nieto said that “there is no scenario” under which Mexico would do so.

In the same interview, Pena Nieto compared Trump’s language to that of dictators Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini, saying it had hurt U.S.-Mexico relations. Former Mexican Presidents Vicente Fox and Felipe Calderon have also alluded to Hitler in describing Trump.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a close Trump adviser, has been among those pushing Trump to make the trip to Mexico, according to a person familiar with their conversations who spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to discuss them publicly. Christie made his own successful trip to Mexico City in September 2014 and has a warm relationship with the Mexican president.

Pena Nieto extended invitations to visit Mexico to both Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton last week. The Washington Post first reported Tuesday that Trump was considering making the trip to Mexico.

Trump is scheduled to speak on immigration Wednesday evening in Phoenix. He was already out West on Tuesday for a campaign stop near Seattle, giving him enough time to jet to Mexico before the Wednesday speech.

Trump’s short stop in Mexico marks his first campaign visit to a foreign country. The Republican has faced a torrent of criticism from Clinton, a former secretary of state, about his preparedness to lead on the world stage. Several Republican foreign policy experts have also warned that Trump is unprepared for the numerous international issues that land on a president’s desk.

Clinton’s campaign has urged voters to not “be fooled” by what it calls Trump’s attempts to disguise his immigration policies.

“Donald Trump will be who he has always been: Donald Trump,” the campaign said in an email Tuesday night.

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  • I trust that the Mexican President will tell Mr. Trump – in nice language, of course – exactly what to do with his imaginary wall.

    And with his fantasy about which country is going to pay for it.

    • Desperate attempt to appear presidential, a “statesman.”

      The challenge for Trump is to raise his level of thinking and communication. He’s surrounded himself with handlers who let him do things his way, and appeals to voters who are soft in the analytical reasoning department.

      I wonder how he’ll spin it during his immigration speech if the Mexican president merely says, “No. Adios.”

      • That assumes that it’s even possible for Mr. Trump to raise his level of thinking and communication. The only times that works – sort of – is when he reads words from a TelePrompTer that were written by someone else. He’s unable to come up with anything on his own that makes sense,

  • dumb Mexican president and ex dumb Mexican presidents comparing him to Hitler, Trump never killed anybody and already they compare him to Hitler, if I were trump, tell that dumb Mexican president that were gonna build that wall and your paying for it if you don’t, will freeze your assets in the U.S.

    • Trump hasn’t killed anyone, because he hasn’t been in power–yet. He has promised to use torture “and more.”

      It wouldn’t surprise anyone if he zipped into the Mexican presidential palace and told Pena Nieto to “pay for my wall.” He’s that dumb.

      • he should pay for the wall, and every commenter should agree with trump. reason ask the 16,500 border patrol agent who put there life on the line protecting you, you have no idea how hard it is for them, that’s why the border agents are endorsing trump the first person they backed running for president. because they want that wall built. the news station and papers won’t tell you that, so build the wall.

        • Agree with an imbecile? Lol. You know, there probably wouldn’t be a need for so many border partrol officers if there was no one here in the USA hiring these illegals. So who is hiring them? Why not go after them? I’ll bet there are a lot of lets say non minority people who are hiring…

      • no I am not making people feel sorry, get your head out of the sand, you know the wall should be built you are just mad because none of your presidents or people running for president ever did that, so your just jealous because trump wants to do it.

        • Not that Trump ever flip-flops (ask his minions), but he might have a “softening” in policy once he’s (hypothetically) elected.

          He’ll say of course the wall is GUARANTEED, all you have to do is move to China. It’s huuuge!

  • He is going down there to make nice. Trump will never change, its the people under him that are telling him to do all these things. If it was up to him he would probably say s@#@# you Mr. president.

  • Good move Donald Trump and so presidential!! Now why? Didn’t Sweet Hillary think of this first? Oh I forgot. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz on the job. IMUA Donald Trump

    • Hillary was Secretary of State. She’s been to many countries, has had intimate conversations with numerous world leaders.

      If she wanted to, she’d have a better chance than Trump of getting the Mexican president to agree to pay for the “Huge Wall.” But she’s not dumb enough to try that.

    • IRT MoiLee, fully agree with your post. Klastri, MillionMonkeys, Keaukaha, Ikefromeli, et al have turned into Mexican Jumping Beans with the Public Relations coup with Mr. Trump meeting, by invitation, Mexican President Nieto prior to his major policy position on Immigration and Illegal Immigration into the United States. All the polls are shifting in Mr. Trumps favor.

      • Like a great many things, your want to speak, is only preceded by your lack of reading and study on the issue. This current Mexican president has an approval rating below 20%, he is wildly unpopular….this is no coup, in fact, most global experts will tell you it is embarrassing–sort of like your comments.

  • If Clinton somehow keeps duping fools and has enough sellouts backing her to win, I dont care.. I will do fine. I think Trump would definitely be better for all people because the demorats policies are failures. It would be really funny to see all of the career hacks getting thrown out of power.

  • Let me clarify. Most of the wall is already built along four states. But there still large pockets of open desert which is patrolled by border agents. Erecting the wall began during Bush 43, but stopped by Obama. Trump simply wants to finish it, not start from scratch. I know, I live in Texas.

  • An invite and acceptance from a sitting President who has an approval rating barely 20%– yes, 20%.

    Vicente Fox, Mexico’s president from 2000 to 2006, said on Wednesday that the invitation from Mr. Nieto was a mistake and that Mr. Trump should never be trusted in the country because of the way he has demonized its people.

    “He is not welcome to Mexico,” Mr. Fox told CNN. “We don’t want him. We reject his visit.”

    Mr. Fox has been critical of Mr. Trump’s plan to build a wall on the border between the United States and Mexico and on Wednesday he shrugged off recent signs of Mr. Trump softening his plans to deport 11 million undocumented immigrants.

    “You cannot trust a guy like this,” Mr. Fox said. “How can we grant confidence and support to ideas that change everyday? He cynically continues to disregard his own people and disregard Mexicans.”

        • Facts are hard to digest, I know–maybe your moms will make grilled cheese and tomato soup for lunch. Then later, if you two are good, you can watch reruns of Rush— sounds like a scholarly afternoon.

        • Polls
          “Seem to be very biased especially this election. So I did my own – 25 Chicago area friends from when I lived there and all staunch former tax paying Democrtcs in previous elections.My results- Trump – 100%; Clinton- 0 %. I expect big shift in Chicago vote unless election is ” fixed ” and the dead vote which is likely!”

  • Klastri and other liberals are going ballistic over Trump’s meeting with the Mexican President. They are upset because Hillary did not do it first. The Mexican President has no obligation to meet with Trump, so why is he doing it if Trump is so biased against Mexicans as liberals claim? He probably is doing it to determine how much Mexico will have to pay for the wall. What do you think, Klastri?

    • What do I think? I think you’re lying. As always.

      Why would you make up that I’m “going ballistic” when in fact, I couldn’t care less? How do you develop these fantasies?

      Can you just pick one day – a single 24 hour period – during which you will not make up things like this?

      • Klastri, I see your nerve endings are close to the surface today. Most people who post comments know you try to convey by your comments that you are calm, cool and collect and intelligent, but most of us know that is not the case and that you probably go ballistic or have temper tantrums when a story about Trump is positive and one about Hillary is negative. I think you are HART’s Ukuleleblue reincarnated as Klastri for the Clinton Campaign.

    • Mexican Pres. Enrique Pena Nieto has low ratings in his country. So he and Trump have a common desperate goal, trying to improve their public image. THAT is why they are doing this.

      Mexican citizens hate Trump and are angry at Pena for giving him this photo op. Two past presidents disrespect Pena and say this whole thing is terrible, stoopid.

      Hillary has already met Pena, as well as the past presidents. She doesn’t need a photo op. Comprende?

        • Teleprompter Trump was very literate, able to read what he was told to say.

          He forgot to tell the Mex Prez to pay for the wall. You should withdraw your vote for his flip-flopping softness. Aren’t you angry? Can u say “Never Trump!”?

    • Watch CNN the Chump didn’t have enough b-lls to tell the Mexican president that they would have to pay for the wall. He is a chicken s-it coward who only talks tough when he is surrounded by his undereducated supporters. He was reading from a written statement and looked like a third grader apologizing to his teacher. He is a pathetic excuse for a human being.

  • Now reporting, did not even bring up his marquee “Wall”, with the madly unpopular Mexican President–it is widely now held, this was just a photo-op. So, much for the master Jedi negotiator ….

    • Trump supporters, you should be angry at Donald for not forcing Pena to pay for the wall. You should disapprove of his softening. You should withdraw your vote for him.

      You can call him Lying Donald, Crooked Trump, Wishy-washy White Guy, Teleprompter Trump, Pinata Head, Flip-Flopping F***er,…

      Agree?

    • Ike, you must have fallen asleep during Trump’s speech. He said the US has a right to build a physical barrier or wall on any of its borders to stop the illegal movement of people drugs and weapons. What was not brought up was which country would pay for the wall.

      • He’s not the macho man you imagined him to be, is he? After all that tough talk, he gets all friendly with the Mex president who’s unpopular in his own country and was looking to boost his approval rating.

        After he stole the Republican nomination by lying about what he’d do with the wall, using his “business acumen” to repair the complex economy, etc., you should realize now that Trump offers only empty promises.

        He’s just a salesman. He cannot lead a country. He has small hands and a bad haircut.

  • On an ordinary day, Donald Trump can’t stop talking about the wall.

    His promise to build a huge wall on the U.S border with Mexico at Mexico’s expense has been among the most consistent refrains through his presidential campaign. (He has spent the last two weeks backing away from another, his vow to deport undocumented immigrants.) His plan to compel Mexico to pay is one of the most detailed items on the otherwise sparse policy section of his website. He can’t help but bring it up at every campaign event, as he explained to The New York Times: “If it gets a little boring … I just say, ‘We will build the wall!’ and they go nuts.”

    But this was no ordinary day, and when Trump met Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto Wednesday afternoon, the Republican presidential nominee didn’t even bring it up.

    RELATED STORY

    What Does Enrique Peña Nieto Want From Trump’s Visit?

    “Who pays for the wall? We didn’t discuss it,” he said during a brief press conference after the meeting.

    Trump’s decision not to bring up paying for the wall during what he described as a lengthy and candid discussion is surprising, and it leaves one of the most important questions about his visit to Mexico unanswered. The trip, hastily arranged and announced only Tuesday night, comes on the eve of what’s being billed as a major speech on immigration. But in his second journey abroad as a presidential candidate, and his first meeting with foreign leaders, Trump avoided the most controversial issue. He did assert the U.S. right to construct a wall—a far cry from the promise that Mexico would fund the construction. Atlantic

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