Donald Trump and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto spoke Wednesday about Trump's proposed border wall, but confusion surrounded what they said about who would pay for it.
"We did discuss the wall, we didn't discuss payment of the wall, that's for a later date," Trump said after the pair met in Mexico, a country the Republican presidential nominee has criticized often and loudly.
Later, though, Pena Nieto tweeted that he told Trump that Mexico would not pay for the wall. Trump spokesman Jason Miller responded by saying "it was not a negotiation, and that would have been inappropriate."
The sequence of events put a blemish on what otherwise proved a smooth trip for Trump. Standing next to Pena Nieto on Wednesday, a subdued and quiet Trump touted what he called five "shared goals" for the two countries. Those are:
- Stopping what Trump called the "humanitarian disaster" of illegal immigration.
- Securing the shared American-Mexican border.
- Stopping drug cartels that operate in both countries.
- Improving trade relations.
- Boosting North American manufacturing.
Trump's hastily arranged Mexico City meeting with Pena Nieto has sapped some attention from the Republican nominee's key immigration speech, due on Wednesday night in Arizona. Trump has repeatedly bashed Mexico since the opening minutes of his campaign last year, painting the country and some immigrants from it as threats to U.S. prosperity.