Republican Presidential Candidate Donald J. Trump has taken credit for the resignation of a failing Mexican public official during his recent visit to that country.
During the NBC News Commander-in-Chief Forum, host Matt Lauer questioned Trump about his temperament as a detriment for foreign policy relations. Trump mentioned his recent visit to Mexico as an example of his success in dealing with other nations.
“If you look at what happened, look at the aftermath, the people who arranged the trip to Mexico have been forced out of the government.”
This week, Luis Videgaray Caso, Mexico’s former Minister of Finance recently tendered his resignation and will not be moving to another post within the government. Videgaray is currently blamed by various news outlets in Mexico for an ongoing economic downturn.
News outlets in Mexico have also noted that Videgaray had been one of the main proponents of inviting both Trump and Democratic candidate Hillary R. Clinton to meet with President Enrique Peña Nieto. While Trump immediately accepted the invitation and travelled to Mexico, Clinton has since declined.
The visit dominated the news cycle in Mexico over the perceived showdown between the two leaders. In the aftermath, most news outlets in Mexico reported that Peña Nieto was overshadowed by Trump and appeared subservient. Mexico’s Milenio has since ripped into Peña Nieto over the visit and how he was outclassed. Peña Nieto responded that he was only looking out for the welfare of Mexico.
According to Mexico’s Proceso Magazine, the idea to invite both U.S. presidential candidates was championed by Videgaray, a man described as one of Peña Nieto’s closest allies and confidants. The Mexican outlet notes Videgaray’s previous influence in that country as making him a likely candidate for the 2018 presidential elections.
Prior to Trump’s visit, Videgaray had been harshly criticized by Proceso and other independent outlets over his poor performance as finance minister. One of the main concerns with Videgaray deals with the ongoing plummeting of the peso. Under his watch, the peso has gone from 13.9 per U.S. dollar to a high of over 20 pesos per dollar. The peso is currently listed at 19.6 per dollar.
Videgaray is also blamed for the plummeting price of domestic oil; being part of the failed energy reform; the lack of investment; and overall stagnation of the Mexican economy.