Mexico’s newly elected president wants a restart button

Andrés Manuel López Obrador was elected president of Mexico on July 1st. Obrador is the first left leaning president to ever be elected in Mexico and he is very popular among young people. Obrador ran on an optimistic platform, looking for a brighter future for Mexico. He wants to “rewrite the rules of the drug war”, and improving relations with the United States.

Obrador will take a new approach to crack down on drugs. Mexico currently uses their military to fight drug use across the country. Obrador has proposed to take the military off the streets and decriminalize drug use. Instead of being treated like criminals drug users will be treated as patients. Additionally Obrador hopes to work on eliminating poverty which he believes ultimately feed into the drug war.

“We will attack the causes of poverty, we will give scholarships to the youth and we will work in the field to get them out of the drug situation.”

–Andrés Manuel López Obrador

Obrador also hopes to create a better relationship with the US. This however does not mean he has only kind word for Trump. Obrador is very critical of Trump’s desire to build a wall and his zero tolerance immigration. However Obrador does recognize the increased immigration of Mexicans to the US is a problem. He has proposed to build up infrastructure and create a better quality of life in Mexico. This would hopefully decrease the desire of Mexicans to leave their country.

“It is not with walls or with the use of force that social problems and security issues are solved. These problems are solved with development and better quality of life.”

–Andrés Manuel López Obrador

Trump and Obrador had a 30 minute phone call after Obrador won the election. Trump described the call as “excellent” and Obrador said it was “respectful”. The two leaders appear to be getting along now and can hopefully work to improve the relations between  the US and Mexico. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will meet with Obrador next Friday to discuss immigration, commerce, security and development.

Do you think Mexican and American relations will improve with the new president?

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