Analysis: Trump Accepting Mexican President's Invitation was a Smart Gamble

Posted: Aug 31, 2016 4:16 PM

Sure, President Pena Nieto -- floundering badly with his own constituents -- may try to exploit the opportunity to embarrass Trump and play up some nationalistic machismo, but on balance, this photo op was a risk worth taking for the GOP nominee.  And he knows it, especially against the backdrop of his much-anticipated primetime immigration speech later tonight.  I explained why this is probably a smart play by Trump on the Outnumbered couch this afternoon (see update).  Video courtesy of Right Sightings:

By the way, Hillary's mega ad buys seem to have had little effect; she's treading water in the head-to-heads, and taking on water regarding her own favorability. Yesterday brought us a "barfy" poll out of must-win Pennsylvania, but today's a new day. Remember this gut punch poll out of Wisconsin last month? Hillary's wide lead has mostly disappeared there:

Marquette's last data set had Trump down yuge, and some of this shift shift is surely due to sample noise. But the latest figures show both The Big Cheese and Sen. Ron Johnson nipping at Democrats' heels, and Scott Walker's approval rating pulling a lot closer to hitting parity than it has in some time. Donald Trump hasn't suddenly become popular in the Badger State, mind you.  Quite the opposite. But as we've seen elsewhere, Hillary Clinton's image is sinking. She's at (35/58) on favorability, down 13 net points from early August, and her honesty numbers are in the toilet:

can't imagine why.

- This is an optics win, hands down. And Mexico's president didn't attempt to publicly clarify that his country wouldn't pay for the wall, even though that's his oft-stated position:

Guess who's cranky?