How did the Washington Post get a hold of more transcripts?
Bezos' paper reported that a transcript of the phone conversation between President Donald Trump and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto reveals that Trump repeatedly asks Nieto to stop saying in public, especially to the press, that Mexico will not pay for the wall the U.S. wants built between the two countries‘ borders.
Washington Post quoted Trump as saying during the call several times to Nieto that: “You can not say that to the press.“ Trump added, still according to the report of the paper that the funding will “work out in the formula somehow”, adding that “it will come out in the wash, and that is okay. But if you are going to say that Mexico is not going to pay for the wall,then I do not want to meet with you guys anymore because I cannot live with that.”
Trump was supposed to have also described the contentious wall as the least important thing economically, but psychologically and politically it is an important thing for him as he has been saying the past two years that Mexico will be paying for the wall he wants constructed for the security of Americans.
The transcripts Washington Post claims it obtained also included the phone conversation of Trump with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull that turned out more strained and tense. The two leaders argued about the refugee agreement Australia entered into with the U.S. under former President Barack Obama which Trump has always said was a “bad deal“ and disadvantageous to the U.S.
Trump was said to have blurted out at Turnball: “I have had it. I have been making these calls all day, and this is the most unpleasant call all day.” Still according to the report, Trump managed another dig before ending the call as he said: “Putin was a pleasant call. This is ridiculous.”
A White House official who declined to speak on record because the president’s calls have not been declassified yet told the Washington Post: “The president is a tough negotiator who is always looking to make the best possible deals for the American people. The United States has many vital interests at stake with Mexico, including stopping the flow of illegal immigration, ending drug cartels’ reach into our communities, increasing border security, renegotiating NAFTA and reducing a massive trade deficit. In every conversation the president has with foreign leaders, he is direct and forceful in his determination to put America and Americans first.”
Both calls focused on an issue Trump has always been very vocal and passionate about- immigration-related issues, issues which experts say hold high political stakes for the President. Trump even told Turnbull:”This is going to kill me. I am the world’s greatest person that does not want to let people into the country. And now I am agreeing to take 2,000 people.”
The President has since met with both leaders after those tense calls. Trump remains firm, however, in threatening Mexico with sanctions for not cooperating on the building of the wall.