Tags: Trump Administration | Donald Trump | GOP2016 | Mexico | mexico | border | wall

WSJ: Trump Line on Wall Payment Added After Mexican President's Tweet

Image: WSJ: Trump Line on Wall Payment Added After Mexican President's Tweet

(AP Images)

By    |   Friday, 02 Sep 2016 12:03 PM

Donald Trump's speech this week outlining his immigration plans did not initially have the line that Mexico would have to foot the bill for the wall he wants along the U.S.-Mexican border.

He put the line in after Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto tweeted that he'd told Trump Mexico wouldn't pay for it.

"I had no choice," Trump said in a Thursday interview, reports The Wall Street Journal, which said the GOP nominee was annoyed that the Mexican leader broke what he considered a deal to keep the wall payment out of the talks at their first meeting.

His declaration that Mexico would "100 percent" pay for the wall, and that "they don't know it yet, but they're going to pay for the wall" drew huge applause during Wednesday night's speech, but it wasn't the only turnabout on trade and immigration, two issues key to the Trump campaign, reports The Journal.

Also, Trump's visit was not well received in Mexico, with a poll in the Reforma newspaper showing 85 percent of Mexicans did not want him to be invited to their country, and another 72 percent claiming his visit weakened Mexico's government.

The visit, though, had been in the works for several weeks, even though it wasn't announced until the day before Trump headed south of the border. Trump campaign officials reported believing the trip would appeal to moderate voters, while the speech later that night was aimed more to his core supporters.

A person close to Peña Nieto agreed with Trump that both parties had agreed not to discuss the wall and its payment during their meeting, telling The Wall Street Journal that the two were to instead talk about other topics. But before they started their conversation, the Mexican president told Trump that his country would not pay for a wall. They went on to discuss the contribution the Mexican community makes in the United States, the issues of weapons and drug sales, and trade concerns.

Trump was also pleased with photos taken of him and Peña Nieto, which supporters said made him appear "presidential."

The GOP nominee said the two had talked about the wall, but not who would pay for it, and it was not until he arrived in Mexico that he saw the president's tweet about not paying for the wall.

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, one of Trump's closest advisers, told him that the Mexican president broke the agreement about the event's talking points with his tweet, giving the nominee the right to announce that Mexico would pay for the wall.

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Donald Trump's speech this week outlining his immigration plans did not initially have the line that Mexico would have to foot the bill for the wall he wants along the U.S.-Mexican border.
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2016-03-02
Friday, 02 Sep 2016 12:03 PM
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