Mr Trump’s insistence that he would build a wall along the US-Mexico border and that the Mexican government would pay for it was one of his most divisive policies. According to 2019 book ‘Kushner Inc’, it was Mr Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, married to Ivanka Trump, who suggested he go to Mexico for a press conference. Steve Bannon, who was the campaign chief executive, reportedly said: “I f***ing love it!”
Mr Bannon added: “We’ve got to take the microphone out of the newscasters’ hands.
“We have to put him in big settings he looks presidential in.”
The two of them planned with Mexican finance minister Luis Videgaray for Mr Pena Nieto to hold a friendly press conference with Mr Trump to try and calm tensions caused by the latter's rhetoric about illegal immigration over the border.
Author Vicky Ward claimed they agreed they would be “no talk of how to pay for the wall”.
Donald Trump and Enrique Pena Nieto (Image: GETTY)
Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner effectively ran Donald Trump's campaign (Image: GETTY)
However, it did not quite go according to plan when Mr Trump actually went to Mexico on August 31, 2016.
At first, Mr Bannon watched the press conference with “great satisfaction”, believing the visual to be beneficial to Mr Trump, because he was so much taller than his Mexican counterpart.
Speaking to campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks over the telephone, he said: “This looks amazing.”
However, when the press questions started, ABC News White House correspondent Jonathan