Obama Defies Trump as Mexican Leader Visits After Convention

07/22/2016 Bloomberg

obama penaHours after Donald Trump accepted the Republican nomination for president with a vow to seal the U.S.-Mexico border, the man he’s seeking to replace welcomed the Mexican president to the White House.

President Barack Obama last saw his Mexican counterpart, Enrique Pena Nieto, less than a month ago, at a regional summit in Canada. And Pena Nieto, who has compared Trump to dictators Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini, is in Washington just as the U.S. presidential contest between the Republican and Democrat Hillary Clinton is gaining steam. Clinton will accept her party’s nomination next week in Philadelphia.

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Mexico Must Take Action To Protect Its Democracy

07/21/2016 The Huffington Post 

pena nieto wefIn the shadow of the U.S. presidential elections, Mexico’s president Enrique Peña Nieto returns to the White House this Friday to talk trade, immigration, and security with President Obama. The two met in Canada less than a month ago, but there is indeed much unfinished business.

First, Mexico must act now to implement promised labor law reforms that would strengthen the labor justice system and end the practice of employer-controlled “protection contracts.”

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  • President Enrique Peña Nieto offered Mexicans an apology over the 2014 scandal surrounding his wife’s purchase of a $7m luxury home-La Casa Blanca-from a government contractor. Peña Nieto apologized while the laws of the new-anti corruption system were being enacted. “For this reason, with all humility I ask your forgiveness,” he said. “I reiterate my sincere and profound apology for the offense and indignation I have caused you.” Read more: Animal Político, La Jornada, El Universal, Milenio, Excélsior.
  • The National Council for the Evaluation of Social Development Policy (CONEVAL) accused the national statistics agency-known as INEGI-of general opacity in its     statistics and methodology as well of arbitrarily changing one of the essential variables when measuring poverty so that it appears to be less of a problem. Read more: El Universal, Animal Político, Aristegui Noticias, El Economista, El Financiero
  • The National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE) conditioned negotiations with the Secretariat of Public Education (SEP) with the dependence to withhold the   introduction of the new educational model this past Wednesday. However, authorities of SEP described the dialogue as “successful” and announced that they reached an agreement to start a forum where processes of evaluation will be reviewed, with the possibility of the National Institute for Educational Assessment (INEE) participation. Read more: El Financiero, La Jornada, El Universal, Milenio, Animal Político.
  •  President Barack Obama will receive President Enrique Peña Nieto this Friday at the Oval office in order to continue the political dialogue and deepen the strategic partnership between the two countries. Read more: Excélsior, La Jornada, Milenio, Aristegui Noticias.




Mexico & the United States: Let’s Build Prosperity & Security

By Earl Anthony Wayne and Sergio M. Alcocer

12642332434_f5a427c4ea_zPresident Obama will receive Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto July 22 in Washington.  This is a critical opportunity to highlight the importance of U.S.-Mexico ties, to underscore the substantial progress in cooperation, and to accentuate how the campaign rhetoric in the United States is out of tune with the reality of relations.  With the U.S. election approaching, it is crucial to take steps to preserve the unprecedented U.S.-Mexico collaboration that exists today.

U.S.-Mexico relations touch the daily lives of more citizens of both countries than do ties with any other country in the world.  Over 30 million U.S. citizens of Mexican heritage, our interconnected economies, the 1,990-mile border and our shared environment link us uniquely.  The two governments have established a comprehensive network of mechanisms that put bilateral relations in the best place they have been in memory.  Officials work together to take advantage of mutual opportunities and to solve shared problems across a wide spectrum of issues, with input from “stakeholders” in the relationship.

There is still a lot of serious work to do to address the problems out there and to take advantage of the opportunities of the region.   Each government has experienced professional ambassadors and teams in place to help guide the work during the U.S. leadership transition.  But, simplistic explanations of the problems or solutions distract us from the good work underway and the hard work still needed to deal with the serious challenges ahead.  As the United States prepares for a presidential transition, the two countries should solidify the mechanisms and engagements that are doing the hard, policy and technical work of enhancing both of our nations’ economic and national security.  These include the High-Level Economic Dialogue (HLED), the 21st Century Border process, the bilateral Security Coordination Group, and the Bilateral Forum on Higher Education, Innovation and Research (FOBESSII).  The U.S.-Mexico relationship is too important for both countries not to continue this work.

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Building Prosperity And Security With Mexico

07/20/16 Forbes

obama penaPresident Obama will meet Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto at the White House on July 22.  This is a critical opportunity to stress the importance of U.S.-Mexico ties, to highlight the substantial progress in government-to-government cooperation, and to underscore how the U.S. campaign rhetoric is out of tune with the reality of the relations with Mexico.  With the U.S. election approaching, it is more important than ever to preserve the unprecedented U.S.-Mexico collaboration that exists today.

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Mexico’s president apologizes for wife’s purchase of home from contractor

07/18/16 The Guardian 

Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto and first lady Angelica Rivera salute during the military parade celebrating Independence Day at the Zocalo square in downtown Mexico CityMexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto has apologized for a damaging conflict of interest scandal in 2014 surrounding his wife’s purchase of a $7m luxury home from a government contractor.

Peña Nieto made what was an unusually frank apology for a Mexican leader over the scandal as he signed into law a new anti-corruption system that the government hopes will boost its credibility in the run-up to the 2018 presidential elections.

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An Año Horrible for Mexico’s President

07/14/16 Bloomberg

Enrique Pena NietoFor Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, 2016 was supposed to be a good year. The government had promised that in the second half of his six-year term, which started in 2012, the reforms pushed through Congress during his momentous first few months in office would bear fruit. They’d bolster growth as well as the standing of his Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI).

Instead, the Mexican leader finds himself battling problems, including low oil prices and public dissatisfaction with the government’s response to corruption. The measure Peña Nieto said was most important—a plan to improve public education by making teachers more accountable for their performance—has sparked protests in the nation’s impoverished south.

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