In an interesting presentation at the University of Denver sponsored by WorldDenver and the Latino Leadership Institute and moderated by former Senator Tom Daschle, it was observed that President Trump has divided America and united Mexico. They believed, due to Trump, America has lost its moral authority to call governments or others to account for corruption, conflict of interest or human rights violations.
The discussants speculated Trump and the new Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) would likely end up in a confrontation, although they have started off on a positive note. I disagree. Although each president may criticize the other, mostly for domestic consumption, they are, in fact, similar in a variety of ways.
They are both nationalists and primarily interested in domestic issues, especially their respective economies. Trump and AMLO share a desire to raise Mexican worker wages. Trump’s interest is to create a disincentive for jobs to move to Mexico.
They both salute sovereignty and are unlikely to have a great deal of interest in other countries (e.g., Venezuela) or each other concerning “internal matters,” such as human rights.
My prediction is Mexico will ignore much of the bluster from D.C. and will instead work hard to maintain the positive economic aspects of the relationship. However, security issues, especially related to drugs, human trafficking and immigration, will likely remain the hot spots.
One note: The election devastated the PRI, the old historic governing party. It may not revive. MORENA, AMLO’s party, inherited many of the PRI voters and interest groups. The PRI is the heart of Mexican clientelism and government corruption. How does AMLO stop the corruption when he and his party have become the boss?
Read Crossley blog: López Obrador will win and Mexico will lose