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Between a Wall and a Hard Place

How Trump Is Disrupting Mexican Politics

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto at a meeting of OPENAL in Mexico City, February 2017. Edgar Garrido / Reuters

On June 11, the U.S. national soccer team will play a World Cup qualifier in Mexico. If any event can act as a gauge of current Mexican sentiment toward its northern neighbor, it will be this. Matches between the United States and El Tri, Mexico’s national team, are always raucous affairs, but this time around, the political climate between the two countries will take things to a whole new level.

In Mexico, U.S. President Donald Trump’s vow to “build a wall” along the U.S.-Mexican border, and to have Mexico pay for it, as well as his fiery rhetoric about illegal migrants and enhanced deportation measures, has created a rare moment of unity behind Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto. That’s something the U.S. team will see in full form during its trip to Mexico City.

Mass protests in several Mexican cities on February 12,

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