Welcome to The Lid, your afternoon dose of the 2016 ethos… Donald Trump appeared alongside Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto Wednesday in Mexico City, showing that the GOP nominee's diplomatic approach has significantly evolved beyond his previous outreach strategy of tweeting pictures of inauthentic regional foodstuffs.
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'16 from 30,000: Just when you think nothing can surprise you any more, huh? Donald Trump, who famously maligned Mexican immigrants in the very first speech of his presidential campaign, appeared alongside Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto in the country's capital Wednesday for side-by-side statements on the relationship between the two nations. Trump's remarks were uncharacteristically subdued, with the GOP nominee reading from notecards and laying out a five-point plan for a "partnership" with America's southern neighbor. As pundit-y as it is to say, the optics of this event were notable. We simply aren't used to seeing Trump standing next to a world leader - let alone one from a country he's previously described as "not our friend." (It's also certainly worth noting that neither Peña Nieto nor Trump are popular in their home countries; each man had an interest in looking like a strong and competent leader, which largely explains the pomp and circumstance here.)
Still, don't forget that, so far, Trump still hasn't done anything definitive to back off the policy positions that have hurt him so much with many minority voters. (While Trump said he and the Mexican president spoke about "the wall," he insisted that the bill for his proposed structure was not discussed.) Until we hear his remarks on immigration tonight, we can't really grade how successful Trump's high-stakes play on this issue has been.
POPPING ON NBC POLITICS
Benjy Sarlin sums up Trump's appearance with the Mexican president.
Leigh Ann Caldwell reminds us that the U.S. already spends billions on border security.
Hillary Clinton called Donald Trump's trip to Mexico as a "photo-op."
Half of Donald Trump's $10 million ad buy hasn't been placed yet, NBC's Mark Murray reports.
The Arizona GOP chair is floating a run for head of the RNC.
A new Trump app aggressively mines the data of its users.
FOR THE RECORD…
"We did discuss the wall, we didn't discuss payment of the wall."
- Donald Trump, on his meeting with the president of Mexico
Joe Biden campaigns for Hillary Clinton in Ohio.
Donald Trump speaks to the American Legion Convention and then holds a rally in Ohio.