Nov 8, 2012

Latin America looks for more action from Barack Obama

By Will Grant
BBC News, Mexico City

No sooner had losing US candidate Mitt Romney uttered the words "I have just called President Obama" than Mexico's president-elect Enrique Pena Nieto took to Twitter congratulate his soon-to-be counterpart.

He was looking forward to working together, he wrote, on common issues for their two nations.

But beyond the obvious diplomatic platitudes, some might question how much the continuation of an Obama administration will really benefit Mexico and the rest of Latin America.

Certainly President Obama's victory was met with relief in the Americas.

Merely on a practical level, four more years of an incumbent president is far more attractive to most governments in the region than having to get to know a new leader who would need time to learn the ropes of international diplomacy.

However, the satisfaction, if not actual celebration, felt in Latin America over President Obama's victory is based much more on his political and ideological position rather than mere practicalities.

Immigration reform is a key issue
It is clear that the immigration debate was crucial in returning President Obama to the White House.

Yet ironically, as has been pointed out by English- and Spanish-speaking commentators alike, more undocumented immigrants were deported in President Obama's first term than under any other president since the 1950s. Read more. 

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