Art of the Deal
While seated next to President Nieto, Trump says he ‘absolutely’ wants Mexico to pay for the wall
July 7, 2017 By Robert Laurie
As you probably know, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has been asked about paying for President Trump’s border wall. His answer was “there’s no way.” People have debated whether he meant “there’s no way” Mexico could pay for such a massive project, or if he was saying “there’s no way” they would, but the gist is the same.
Nieto has no intention of paying for a wall.
Trump, on the other hand, has vowed repeatedly that Mexico will fund the project – one way or another. It’s been a staple of the Trump campaign since day one, but lately we’ve been hearing rumblings of budgetary solutions that don’t appear to include a whole lot of Mexican money.
Trump says Mexico will ‘absolutely’ pay for border wall during G20 meeting with Nieto
So, while President Trump was seated next to President Nieto at the G20 conference, a reporter decided to ask: “Do you still want Mexico to pay for the wall?”
Trump’s one-word answer was “Absolutely.”
Now, the question becomes: “Does Trump really have a plan to squeeze the Pesos out of Mexico, or is this just bluster designed to put pressure on the Mexican government in other negotiations?”
President Trump has been leaning on the ‘renegotiate NAFTA’ line lately, so it’s conceivable that the wall money could come into play there. Either it could be used as a stick to push Mexico into a more U.S.A.-friendly trade position, or a carrot that’s offered in exchange for concessions in other areas – think something along the lines of “I’ll shut up about making you pay for the wall if you sign this deal.”
Trump can then say that the money The United States saves after the new NAFTA goes into effect offsets the cost of the wall, thereby “paying” for it. He’d get to claim wins on the wall (even if it’s really a semantic one) and NAFTA, while Nieto could still say he wasn’t paying for construction.
We’ll see how it all shakes out but, if I were a betting man, I’d bet that’s the kind of deal we’re headed for.
Robert Laurie’s column is distributed by CainTV, which can be found at caintv.com