Mexican President Peña Nieto and Trump Feud on Twitter Over Who Will Pay for the Wall
A courteous meeting between Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto in Mexico City on Wednesday, was followed by a disagreement on Twitter on Thursday.
The Mexican president invited Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton to meet with him. Trump was the first to meet with Peña Nieto.
Trump and Peña Nieto met privately for about an hour before they made remarks and took questions from reporters. In one question they were asked about who will pay for the border wall that Trump is proposing.
“Who pays for the wall? We didn’t discuss,” said Trump.
But Peña Nieto said otherwise after the meeting on Twitter.
“At the beginning of the conversation with Donald Trump, I made it clear Mexico will not pay for the wall,” Peña Nieto said on Twitter.
Al inicio de la conversación con Donald Trump dejé claro que México no pagará por el muro.
— Enrique Peña Nieto (@EPN) August 31, 2016
During Trump’s speech in Phoenix, Arizona, Trump reiterated that Mexico would pay for the wall.
“They don’t know it yet, but they’re going to pay for the wall,” said the GOP nominee.
“And they’re great people, and great leaders, but they’re going to pay for the wall,” he said.
Trump then tweeted on Thursday: “Mexico will pay for the wall!”
Mexico will pay for the wall!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 1, 2016
Peña Nieto then responded to Trump’s tweet.
“I repeat what I said to you personally, Mr. Trump: Mexico will never pay for a wall,” said Peña Nieto in Spanish.
Repito lo que le dije personalmente, Sr. Trump: México jamás pagaría por un muro. https://t.co/IJNVe0XepY
— Enrique Peña Nieto (@EPN) September 1, 2016
The Mexican president also told local media outlets that some of Trump’s proposals “are a threat to Mexico.” He told the local media that he told Trump that the Mexican people had been “very insulted” by some of the candidate’s comments.
In his remarks in Mexico Trump said that it was a “great honor to be invited.”
Trump said that in his private meeting with Peña Nieto he was “straightforward” on the impacts of trade and immigration policies on the United States.
Trump said having a secure border is a “sovereign right” and mutual benefit. The GOP nominee also said that the NAFTA trade agreement has been a greater benefit to Mexico than to the United States, adding that it has contributed to an unfair outflow of American jobs.
While the Mexican president acknowledged that there are issues at the border, he said that it works both ways, with weapons and cash influx from the United States to Mexico having contributed to violence in Mexico.