May 19, 2006
Noriega and Reyes on the Bush border plan

Rick Casey writes about State Rep. Rick Noriega, who is also a Lieutenant Colonel in the National Guard and who fully expects to be one of those 6000 troops that President Bush is sending to the US-Mexico border. Greg has already highlighted some of it, along with related items of interest, but the whole thing is required reading. Check it out.

Meanwhile, US Rep. Silvestre Reyes writes a pair of letters (both PDF) to President Bush.

One letter addresses the ways in which National Guard deployment along the border would detract from the military readiness. The other addresses the potentially dangerous fashion in which a militarization of border could skew Mexican and Latin American politics against the US.

In all of the demagoguery and BS over immigration, very little has been said about the fact that our actions do not occur in a vacuum. As Rep. Reyes' second letter notes, Mexico's Presidential election is coming up soon, and the stakes are high.

[Mexican President Vicente] Fox is conservative and pro-business and has generally good relations with the White House. But Bush is widely disliked in Mexico.

"Installing National Guard support bases on the border is a way of warning Mexican voters . . . that the relationship with the United States could get dangerously complicated if a president is elected who does not understand the gringo power or is looked dimly upon by it," columnist Julio Hernandez Lopez wrote on Monday in La Jornada, a popular leftist newspaper.

Candidate Felipe Calderon of Fox's conservative National Action Party is leading the presidential race in polling, but the left-leaning Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador is close on his heels.

The Mexican Constitution bars Fox from running for a second term. Lopez Obrador and a third candidate, Roberto Madrazo, have accused Fox of being Bush's lapdog.

We've seen quite a few elections in Europe decided by which candidate ran on the strongest anti-American platform. Shouldn't we be concerned about this happening in Mexico? I'm not seeing much evidence to suggest that anyone in Washington is.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on May 19, 2006 to National news | TrackBack