MEXICO CITY, Sept. 7 (UPI) — Mexican Finance Minister Luis Videgaray, seen as President Enrique Peña Nieto‘s right-hand man, resigned on Wednesday, ministry spokeswoman Claudia Algorri confirmed.
Videgaray, 48, will be replaced by José Antonio Meade, Mexico’s social development minister. He leaves the government having served as Peña Nieto’s adviser for more than a decade.
Videgaray pushed through a tax increase in 2013, which business leaders criticized for allegedly stunting consumer demand during a struggling economy. Meade will present Mexico’s budget to Congress on Thursday.
Peña Nieto’s popularity recently fell to a record low following public backlash from U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump‘s visit to Mexico. The president’s popularity has been consistently low in recent years following a security crisis in the country brought forward by drug cartels.
Peña Nieto’s administration was also further embarrassed by drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s escape from a Mexican federal prison last year. Guzman was recaptured in January.
Some Mexican media outlets report Videgaray was the one who came up with the idea to invite Trump to meet with the president — something both Videgaray and Peña Nieto have rejected. Peña Nieto said the idea to invite Trump was his own.