MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – An overwhelming majority of Mexicans hold a negative view of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, but most believe their own president should meet with him to defend the country’s interests, an opinion poll showed on Friday.
The survey by polling firm Buendia & Laredo for newspaper El Universal showed that 74 percent of respondents had a negative opinion of Trump, a Republican. Only 5 percent had a positive view of him.
Trump, who launched a string of verbal attacks on Mexico during the campaign, has vowed to build a wall along the U.S. southern border, carry out mass deportations of illegal immigrants and has threatened to ditch a trade agreement with Mexico and Canada.
President Enrique Pena Nieto sparked widespread anger by inviting Trump to Mexico City for talks at the end of August.
A parallel survey by the same pollster published at the weekend showed that nearly two-thirds of Mexicans believed the invitation was a mistake.
Still, now that Trump has been elected president, 53 percent of Mexicans said Pena Nieto should meet the New Yorker to promote the country’s interests with the United States, the poll showed. Some 43 percent of those surveyed took the opposite view.
Fully 52 percent of the respondents said they held a positive opinion of Trump’s defeated Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, with only 7 percent of the opposite view.
The poll of 1,000 Mexicans was conducted between Nov. 11 and 15, and had a margin of error of 3.5 percent.
(Reporting by Natalie Schachar; Editing by Leslie Adler)