Tuesday, 19 June, 2018

Trump to meet Mexican president ahead of immigration speech

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto speaks during a joint press conference with US Presidential candidate Donald Trump in Mexico City on Wednesday Trump to meet Mexican president ahead of immigration speech
Melinda Barton | 01 September, 2016, 14:35

The tycoon failed to outline what he would do with those who have not committed crimes beyond their immigration offences - a sharp retreat after earlier promises to create a "deportation force" to remove the estimated 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally. He reportedly told his supporters in Phoenix that he had "met with numerous great parents who lost their children to sanctuary cities and open borders".

And contradicting aides who suggested he might dial back his proposal for a mass deportation of the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants in the country, Trump vowed there would be no citizenship offered to those who enter the USA illegally. "There will be no amnesty".

"People will know you can't just smuggle in, hunker down and wait to be legalised", he said.

His hardline approach contrasted the tone he adopted at Mexico City hours earlier where he called Mexicans "amazing people".

Standing alongside the president of Mexico, a measured Donald Trump defended the right of the United States to build a massive border wall along its southern flank, but he declined to repeat his frequent promise to force Mexico to pay for it.

Donald Trump is struggling to get his story straight on his infamous pledge to build a wall in Mexico. And here's this: the Berlin Wall was 96 miles long, the un-fenced part of the border between the USA and Mexico is 2,000 miles.

Still, Trump laid out a series of tough policies to tackle illegal immigration when he delivered his speech in Phoenix, Arizona, on Wednesday night.

This was later refuted, as Peña Nieto claimed that he had told Trump that his country would not be paying for the border wall.

Pena Nieto "did not even take a really strong stand and talk to Mr. Trump directly to his face and tell him exactly why his stances are not acceptable to Mexicans", said Tony Payan, director of the Mexico Center at Rice University's Baker Institute.

He finished up his day in Phoenix, Arizona with the much ballyhooed immigration speech.

Later, he said he would create a new "deportation task force" to deal with "the most unsafe criminal illegal immigrants" who have "evaded justice". He said undocumented immigration from Mexico to the United States had dropped considerably since reaching a peak a decade ago.

Trump is trailing Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in opinion polls for the November 8 election. U.S. - Mexico wall: costly So after his first foreign visit as leader of the GOP, Trump is at an impasse with the leader he visited.

Pena Nieto appeared conciliatory and focused on the importance of the bilateral relationship, without directly addressing Trump's rhetoric on undocumented immigration and free trade.

For weeks, Donald Trump flirted with a self-described "softening" of the hard-line immigration policies that propelled him to the Republican nomination, raising the hopes of party officials, some Hispanic leaders and skeptical voters unnerved by his presidential candidacy.

But Pena Nieto contradicted Trump, tweeting that he told the Republican nominee in their meeting that Mexico would not pay for such a wall.

"As with any law enforcement activity, we will set priorities", Trump said.

He said: "We have to listen to the concerns that working people, our forgotten working people, have over the record pace of immigration and its impact on their jobs, wages, housing, schools, tax bills and general living conditions".

At the Angel of Independence, retired middle school teacher Rivera Garcia predicted that Pena Nieto, "is going to have to pay the political cost of inviting Trump". Hillary Clinton has also received an invitation to meet with the president of Mexico.

She also has multiple paths to the 270 Electoral College votes needed to win the White House, while Trump's roadmap is far narrower.

"It certainly takes more than trying to make up for a year of insults and insinuations by dropping in on our neighbors for a few hours and then flying home again", she said.