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Trump had his best moment in Mexico, but he’s still poised to lose, says GOPer

How Trump and Clinton will handle immigration

Donald Trump's visit to Mexico was a high watermark for his campaign, but it might not be enough to put him over the top in November, according to Republican strategist Alex Conant.

Trump appeared in a press conference with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto on Wednesday, during which he took a softer tone toward America's neighbor and skirted around his promise to make Mexico pay for a border wall, a touchstone of his campaign.

"It was a very successful trip. I think even Clinton supporters would acknowledge Trump looked good on that stage in Mexico. He looked presidential. It was probably the best moment of his campaign so far," Conant, the former press secretary for Marco Rubio's presidential campaign, told CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" on Thursday.

Following the visit, Trump further outlined his immigration policy in Phoenix, AZ, where he reassured the crowd Mexico would pay for the wall. Earlier in the day, Pena Nieto tweeted that he had told Trump during a private meeting on Wednesday that Mexico would not fund the wall, disputing Trump's assertion during the press conference that the two had not discussed the issue.

Boris Epshteyn, senior advisor to the Trump-Pence campaign, again on Thursday said the subject had not been broached.

"As far as the wall is concerned, this was the first meeting yesterday with President Nieto. You eat the meal first, then get the check, so of course the paying for the wall was not discussed," he told CNBC's "Squawk on the Street."

During his speech in Phoenix, Trump also said he would triple the number of Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers and convene a "special deportation task force" to quickly remove from the country undocumented immigrants who had committed crimes.

That speech allowed Trump to get "back to basics" and gave him the opportunity to remind Republicans why they should support his campaign, Conant said. That is critical because only 80 to 85 percent of Republicans currently support their party's nominee, he added.

"He really needs to get more than 90 percent for this to be a very close race. I think days like yesterday help," he said.

That said, anyone would acknowledge the electoral college math looks challenging, he added.

NBC News currently projects the number of states likely to vote Democrat or leaning that way gives Hillary Clinton 288 electoral college votes, above the 270 needed to win in November. Trump is likely to get 174 votes, while 76 are toss-ups.

"On the current trajectory, obviously Mr. Trump is losing this campaign," Conant said.