Mexico steps back during U.S. discussion of immigration reform
January 30, 2013
In the coming weeks, the U.S. Congress will be discussing changing the immigration policies completely, and its southern neighbor, Mexico, has the most invested in this. However, that does not mean that Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and the government will have a strong standpoint on the issue, according to the Los Angeles Times.
"Pena Nieto, and the foreign minister and our new ambassador have all more or less said the same thing about Mexico's role in this, and the message is, 'We're interested, and we'll help if you think we can, but we're not going to take an active role,'" Andres Rozental, a Mexico City consultant and former deputy foreign minister, told the news source.
When Pena Nieto was sworn in on December 1, he discussed immigration reform with President Barack Obama, explaining that Mexicans fully support the idea of an immigration reform. He then added, "More than demanding what you should do or shouldn't do, we do want to tell you that we want to contribute. We really want to participate with you," according to the publication.
Mexico will be taking a more subtle approach when it comes to immigration reform laws, as it has rattled and backfired times before. In 2001, Mexico's president at the time, Vicente Fox, made it one of his priorities to promote a reform law, and it caused conservatives in the U.S. to feel invaded by his pointed arguments that praised those who left Mexico and reaped the benefits of the job market and social status in the U.S. As a result, the reform bill did not go anywhere, but this time it just may go through. If it does, it will be lucky for Pena Nieto, but it is important that Fox receive some of the credit for his efforts, the news outlet reports.
"It was Fox, when he came in, who said [illegal immigrants to the U.S.] are heroes - that we need to have a positive attitude about the people who left," Jeffrey Davidow, a former U.S. ambassador to Mexico, told the media outlet. "That wasn't really the view before."