Mexico City legislators passed a proposal this week to ban Donald Trump from entering their country, following the presidential candidate’s repeated xenophobic rhetoric surrounding immigrants, particularly those from Mexico.
The proposal, which passed unanimously, is largely a symbolic recommendation since the local legislature cannot enforce federal legislation, as the Huffington Post pointed out. But Deputy José Manuel Delgadillo of the conservative National Action Party noted that the proposal was a way to urge Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto to more forcefully confront Trump.
From the Mexico City legislature, which asked the federal government to ban Donald Trump from the country today pic.twitter.com/VNdykeEQ9f
— Roque Planas (@RoqPlanas) March 3, 2016
“What we’re saying is that if he wants to build a wall so that Mexicans can’t enter his country, then he is not welcome in our country,” Delgadillo said, according to the publication. “What we need now is for President Peña Nieto to make a strong statement condemning Mr. Trump’s anti-Mexican comments.”
Trump has been running his presidential campaign on inflammatory rhetoric that denigrates Mexican immigrants as “rapists” and criminals, as well as the mass deportation of undocumented immigrants. He recently stated that Mexico was “killing” the United States by providing cheap labor. Meanwhile, former Mexican President Felipe Calderon said Trump reminded him of Adolph Hitler.
Local Mexico City legislators aren’t the only ones pushing back on Trump’s rhetoric. After Trump called for Mexico to build a wall along its shared border with the United States, former Mexican President Vicente Fox responded by using profanity. “I’m not going to pay for that fucking wall,” Fox said.
Up until now, the current Mexican government hasn’t directly addressed Trump’s charges. But Peña Nieto’s chief of staff hopes that the government may be able to counter some of his harsh views by eventually meeting with the Republican and Democratic nominees to talk about its relationship as an economic opportunity.
A potential Trump presidency may actually be spurring an increase of migrants at the southern U.S. border, according to Reuters . Between October 2015 and February 2016, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency reported a 24 percent increase in the number of migrants detained as they crossed the U.S.-Mexico border. One worker at a migrant shelter in Mexico attributed Trump’s rhetoric to the surge in migrant crossings, stating to the publication, “They think they need to take advantage while they can.”