After a private meeting, Donald Trump and Mexican president Peña Nieto held a joint press conference where they addressed some of the issues that have been raised by Trump. Those hoping that Trump would come back with a check for his wall will be sorely disappointed. In fact, Nieto took the opportunity to debunk several of Trump’s claims regarding immigration and trade directly to his face. A good old fashioned ‘fact-checking.’
Trump has made illegal immigration a cornerstone of his campaign and cites it as a major problem facing the United States. Nieto disagreed arguing that illegal immigration has slowed down dramatically and has little impact on the United States.
‘Undocumented immigration from Mexico to the U.S. had its highest point 10 years ago and it has slowed down CONSISTENTLY even to the point of being a negative in net effect at this point.’
Nieto also took the opportunity to point out that problems at the border aren’t just harmful to the United States. Trump has tried to portray it as if Mexico is sending all their criminals to the US, but Nieto argues criminals in the US are helping the Mexican drug cartels.
‘Every year, millions of dollars and weapons come in from the north that strengthen the cartels and other criminal organizations that generate violence in Mexico and OBTAIN gains from the drug sales in the US.’
Trump has made free-trade deals, such as NAFTA, another frequent issue with is campaign. Nieto argued that NAFTA benefits both countries. Trade deals were a recurring issue in both the Democratic and Republican primaries. Bernie Sanders often attacked Clinton for her support of free-trade deals. Unlike Trump, Sanders did not propose isolationism, but rather fair trade deals that would benefit working people in all countries. Clinton has backed away from her support of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
When it was his turn to speak, Trump acknowledged that the wall was discussed, but said the issue of funding wasn’t brought up. He also said that both countries need to work together to deal with the issue of crime.
‘ No one wins in either country when human smugglers and drug traffickers prey on people, when cartels commit acts of violence’
On the issue of trade, Trump discussed improving NAFTA. He said that workers in both countries need a pay raise claiming that American workers haven’t had a pay raise in 18 years. Trump makes a bit of sense here. His diagnosis to this one problem is correct, but he’s offered no real solution. Furthermore, it’s a complete reversal of his earlier stance that wages in America are too high.
You can check out the full press conference here:
Featured image via screenshot from video.