Who would’ve thunk that popular vote loser Donald Trump’s completely made-up phone calls would be less unhinged than the real thing? Truth really is stranger than fiction when it comes to Trump. A day after we find out he completely fabricated telephone conversations with the leaders of both the Boy Scouts and Mexico, Trump’s real conversations with world leaders have been leaked. It’s as bad, and horribly hilarious, as you could imagine.
First, his call with Mexican President Peña Nieto on January 27, after Peña Nieto cancelled a trip to D.C. following Trump’s signing an executive order to begin construction and tweets about how Mexico is totally going to pay for it. Peña Nieto kicks it off, reiterating “we find this completely unacceptable for Mexicans to pay for the wall that you are thinking of building.”
How else is Trump going to answer? “In the latest election, I
with a large percentage of Hispanic voters. I do not know if you heard, but with Cuba, I had 84 percent, with the Cuban-American vote. But overall generally, I had well over 30 percent and everyone was shocked to see this. I understand the community and they understand me, and I have a great respect for the Mexican people.” And did you hear about my inauguration crowd? “In Ohio, they are having rallies for Trump right now because Trump has taken a hard stance on Mexico. We lost a lot of factories in Ohio and Michigan and I won these states—some of these states have not been won in 38 years by a Republican and I won them very easily. So they are dancing in the streets.”
Yes. Dancing. This is all in the context of a border tax proposal that Trump has been harping on in the call, which is news to Peña Nieto, who mentions that he hasn’t heard this one before. No, insists Trump. “I have been telling this to every group of 50,000 people or 25,000 people—because no one got people in their rallies as big as I did.” Then you get to the heart of the matter: the wall and who is going to pay for it and how it doesn’t really matter who is paying for it. What matters is Trump being able to continue to say Mexico is paying for it. “I am willing to say that we will work it out, but that means it will come out in the wash and that is okay.” Oh, and “I know how to build very inexpensively, so it will be much lower than these numbers I am being presented with, and it will be a better wall and it will look nice.”
Did I mention the patronizing? There was a lot of patronizing. Trump consistently calls the president “Enrique,” while the Mexican president never breaks protocol, even when bombarded with Trumpisms, and calls him Mr. President. Even when Trump tells him about the bad hombres and lectures him about how Mexican “citizens are being killed all over the place, your police officers are being shot in the head, and your children are being killed.”