Report: Mexican Officials Never Actually Expected Trump To Show Up

When Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto extended an invitation to the U.S. presidential candidates last week, he reportedly never expected Donald Trump to turn up on his doorstep.

Several top-level Mexican officials and diplomats told the Washington Post on Tuesday that they were never informed that Trump had even been invited, or that he had announced on Twitter that he had scheduled a last-minute visit.

“It took by surprise many of the high-level officials in the government. Many people didn’t know,” a senior official told the Post. “Someone thought it was a very good idea just to send this letter, and they didn’t expect one of the candidates would say yes.”

Peña Nieto sent a letter to both Hillary Clinton and Trump on Friday offering to host them for a discussion on the bilateral relationship between their respective countries. The Republican nominee agreed to visit a country he has denigrated on the campaign trail for taking jobs from Americans and sending “criminal” immigrants over the United States’ southern border.

The Post reported that the announcement, which has infuriated many Mexican politicians, artists and academics, came as Foreign Minister Claudia Ruiz Massieu was attending the opening of a new Mexican consulate in Milwaukee. Massieu’s staffers told the newspaper that they received no advance warning of Trump’s visit.

The trip came as a surprise to the press following Trump on the campaign trail, who were sent on to Phoenix, where he is slated to deliver a speech outlining his immigration policy on Wednesday night. The short notice also caused alarm among staff at the U.S. Embassy in Mexico, who told CNN that it would be a logistical headache to ensure security for such a last-minute visit.

The Trump campaign has batted down suggestions that the trip was organized on a whim, insisting that authorities in both Mexico and the U.S. have spent the last five days working out an agenda.

“There have been intense, around-the-clock discussions between both parties since last Friday to establish an agenda for discussion and make sure it is a fruitful use of both leaders’ time,” an anonymous Trump official told Bloomberg Politics.

The source told Bloomberg that the conversation will touch on the drug war, jobs, and trade, and that both camps will issue statements after the meeting.
Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner was key to the agenda negotiations, the official said.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

Latest Livewire
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: