- 27 Mar 2023 15:28 #15269606
This went somewhat underreported:
Newsweek wrote:Mexico's President Sides With Trump, Saying Charges Are a 'Fabrication'
BY JON JACKSON ON 3/21/23 AT 4:43 PM EDT
- Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador voiced support for Donald Trump, saying a possible indictment of the former president would be an attempt to prevent him from running for reelection.
- López Obrador's support for Trump is surprising, given Trump's past comments about Mexico and a recent suggestion from GOP lawmakers that the U.S. military should take action against Mexican drug cartels.
- While defending Trump, López Obrador alluded to criminal accusations that have been leveled against him.
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador on Tuesday defended Donald Trump, saying a potential indictment of the former president could be a move to prevent him from seeking reelection.
"Right now, former President Trump is declaring that they are going to arrest him," López Obrador, who is also known by his initials AMLO, said during a press conference. "If that were the case...it would be so that his name doesn't appear on the ballot."
The leftist president's support for Trump may seem unlikely, given the latter's past comments about Mexico, such as insisting that the country pay for construction of a 450-mile wall along the southern border. (López Obrador's predecessor, Enrique Peña Nieto, denounced Trump's wall-financing demand, and Mexico did not fund the wall.)
More recently, López Obrador hit out against members of Trump's Republican Party after some GOP lawmakers spoke in favor of the U.S. taking military action against Mexican drug cartels. That suggestion from prominent Republicans like Senator Lindsey Graham and Representatives Dan Crenshaw and Marjorie Taylor Greene prompted AMLO to say on March 9 that Mexico is "not going to permit any foreign government to intervene in our territory, much less that a government's armed forces intervene."
Speculation has been building in recent days that Trump could be arrested and indicted by a New York City grand jury following an investigation into an alleged hush money payment from Trump to former adult film star Stormy Daniels during his 2016 presidential campaign. Trump, who has denied Daniels' allegation that they had an affair, as well as any wrongdoing, recently said he would be arrested on Tuesday and called on his supporters to protest in response.
As for why AMLO might be supporting Trump ahead of a possible arrest, the Mexican leader alluded to criminal accusations he has faced himself. In 2022, a veteran Mexican politician and an investigative journalist said López Obrador and his government had links to organized crime, which the president has fervently denied.
López Obrador, who became president in 2018, has said election fraud caused him to lose his attempts to gain the office in 2006 and 2012.
"I say this because I too have suffered from the fabrication of a crime, when they didn't want me to run," López Obrador said Tuesday while discussing Trump. "And this is completely anti-democratic.... Why not allow the people to decide?"
José Díaz Briseño, the Washington, D.C., correspondent for Mexican newspaper Reforma, tweeted out clips of AMLO's press conference.
During the conference, López Obrador also touched on another controversial subject when he said President Joe Biden's administration should not be discussing violence in Mexico following journalist Seymour Hersh's report that Biden authorized the 2022 attack on Russia's Nord Stream gas pipelines. The White House has dismissed Hersh's allegations, published last month, as "utterly false."
Newsweek reached out by email to Mexico's Embassy in Washington, D.C., for comment.