Mexico to Hold Another Referendum, This Time on New Train

11/13/2018 – The New York Times

tmayaBy the Associated Press

MEXICO CITY — Mexico’s president-elect said Monday he will hold another public referendum later this month on his proposal for a railway to connect the main tourist attractions across the Yucatan peninsula.

Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said during a trip to the Yucatan state capital of Merida that the public can vote on the train and nine other proposed projects and programs Nov. 24 and 25.

A referendum last month cancelled Mexico City’s new $13 billion airport that was already one-third completed.

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Canada says it has no particular concerns over trade deal after U.S. vote

11/7/2018 – Reuters

REUTERS/Edgard Garrido/File Photo/File Photo

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada has no particular concerns over the fate of a new continental trade deal after U.S. elections that gave Democrats control of the House of Representatives, a senior official said on Wednesday.

Some U.S. commentators are already predicting the U.S.-Mexico-Canada (USMCA) pact – agreed in late September – could face problems when the new House convenes in January, given skeptical comments from sections of the Democratic Party about the benefits of the deal.

Andrew Leslie, parliamentary secretary to Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, indicated he was not worried when asked about ratification of the treaty.

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Trump announces plan to block some migrants from seeking asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border, offers few details

11/2/2018 – Washington Post

(Guillermo Arias)

President Trump said Thursday he intends to take executive action next week to end the “abuse” of the U.S. asylum system, a plan that could include “massive tent cities” at the southern border aimed at holding migrants indefinitely and making it more difficult for them to remain in the country.

But Trump offered few other details during remarks at the White House, where he reiterated unsubstantiated claims he has made in recent weeks that a caravan of migrants from Central America, traveling north through Mexico by foot, represents an urgent national security threat. He characterized the group, which includes many families with children, as dangerous and akin to an “invasion.”

The president’s remarks, carried live on cable news, came just days before Tuesday’s midterm elections, the latest bid by Trump to make immigration the top campaign issue.

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What the 2018 election means for immigrants in the U.S.

10/26/2018 – Washington Post

white house
Photo by Aaron Kittredge on

Recent events at the U.S.-Mexico border and ongoing deliberations over the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program have put in stark light the perils of belonging to a politicized group. Even immigrants who have risked their life in defense of their adopted country have found that service is no protection in our nativist climate.

This year, Army veteran Miguel Perez Jr., who enlisted after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, was deported because of substance abuse issues connected to his struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder — a direct result of his military service. Other veterans with precarious immigration statuses face similar predicaments, caught between President Trump and his nativist platform and Democrats who wish to widen immigrant rights and protect members of vulnerable groups such as Perez. The midterm elections are likely to determine their fate.

In the late 19th century, a class of Union veterans faced similar political struggles. Public concern grew as reports surfaced that thousands of Union veterans were emigrating out of the United States but keeping their military pensions. Many felt as if these veterans had forfeited their right to American aid by leaving the United States. This belief turned these veterans into a political football — much like immigrants today.

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Incoming Mexico government starts public consultation on new airport

10/25/2018 – Reuters 


The incoming government of leftist President-elect Manuel Lopez Obrador opened polls on Thursday for a public consultation to decide whether to ditch a multi-billion dollar new airport that is already partly built.

The public will be polled from Oct. 25 to Oct. 28 on whether Lopez Obrador’s government should finish the ambitious new Mexico City airport or scrap it and upgrade the Santa Lucia military air base to complement the existing hub.

The consultation will be held in over 500 municipalities, covering about 80 percent of Mexico’s population, incoming transportation minister Javier Jimenez Espriu said this month.

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Public will decide future of Mexico’s $13 billion airport

10/25/2018 – The Washington Post 

This Oct. 17, 2018 photo, a shows the construction of new airport in Texcoco, Mexico. The future of Mexico City’s new airport, already about a third completed, comes down to a public vote this week in a political high-wire act by the country’s president-elect that could shut down Mexico’s largest infrastructure project in recent memory. (Miguel Tovar/Associated Press)

By: Christopher Sherman 

The future of Mexico City’s new airport, already about a third completed, comes down to a public vote this week in a political high-wire act by the country’s president-elect that could shut down Mexico’s largest infrastructure project in recent memory.

President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador promised to let the people decide the fate of the $13 billion airport designed in collaboration with celebrated architect Norman Foster. Lopez Obrador had earlier said he would cancel it if elected, his victory being a referendum in itself.

Over four days beginning Thursday, citizens will cast ballots asking whether to continue with the new airport or update Mexico City’s existing one and another airport two hours away in Toluca, while building two new runways at a military base that would be converted to commercial use.

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Mexico City Airport Threatens to Turn Into Investor Standoff

10/23/2018 – Bloomberg

1000x-1By Daniela Guzman & Andrea Navarro

A referendum on the future of Mexico City’s partially built airport this week is shaping up to be president-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s first standoff with investors who have taken a wait-and-see approach to the new government.

The nationwide vote from Oct. 25 to Oct. 28 will ask people whether they want to push ahead with the $13 billion Texcoco project, or go for a cheaper alternative further away from Mexico City. According to a national poll by El Financiero last month, 63 percent of respondents support the continuation of the airport construction.

As the referendum approaches though, investors are getting increasingly nervous. The yield on $6 billion of bonds sold to finance the new airport has soared to a record this month after AMLO, as the president-elect is known, said in a Facebook video that “we can’t finance this project” and one of his advisers warned it was two years behind schedule. It could become a litmus test of the new government’s approach to business and financial affairs.

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