Citing a “great deal” that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump promised him on supplies, labor, and land, Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto says he is rethinking his opposition to the wall Trump wants to build to separate the two countries.
“Of course, there are a lot of negatives to the wall,” Peña Nieto said in his revised statement, issued this morning at the National Palace in Mexico City. “But there is much more of an upside to this than I realized.”
Peña Nieto said Trump, with his extensive ties to real estate and development interests in the United States, can get him a “great deal” on everything it would take to build the wall, which is intended to keep out Mexicans who come to the U.S. illegally. “Deals like this don’t come around every day,” he said. “What we would have with Trump is a really good business partner, someone who can get land, labor, and supplies at a steal.”
Peña Nieto said the construction project, given its scale, would provide significant job opportunities for Mexicans. “Think of the experience they would get working on such a large-scale, intricate project, and not to mention one of such high profile,” he said.
Many construction laborers in the United States are Mexican, Peña Nieto pointed out, “With this project, the number of jobs available to them and to Mexicans here in our country is tremendous,” he said. “I mean, this is a really, really big project. And Trump has said a lot of the engineering could be done in Mexico, by Mexicans. They wouldn’t just get the grunt jobs.”
“You can’t buy that kind of job training,” he said. “That’s why I’m saying, aside from the political issues that surround this project, what we have at the core is a once-in-a-lifetime development opportunity, one of unprecedented magnitude, that opens the door to the kinds of job training and employment opportunities we often talk about but seldom see. In a way, Trump is offering a tremendous deal, and I think we should jump at it.”
In response, Trump said he wants Mexico to decide soon, because if he doesn’t hear back before the election, he’ll offer the work to Canada.
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Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, fresh from his dramatic trip to Mexico to discuss immigration policy, said he would allow Angélica Rivera, the wife of Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto, into the country if she wants to come. “We would make an exception for her, absolutely, and I told her that when I was in Mexico,” Trump said at a campaign stop in Albuquerque, N.M. “I told her I’ll have a car ready for her anytime she wants to come. She has my number. She said she’d like to see Trump Tower. I said I’d like to show it to her.” Rivera, 47, an actress and model before she became Mexico’s First Lady, was born in Mexico City. She has been married to Peña Nieto since 2010. Trump’s trip to Mexico has generated a considerable amount of analysis. In Mexico, he appeared to take a conciliatory approach to the country, but that appeared to change in a major address he gave in Phoenix that night. More.
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