LAREDO, Texas – U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar has shed more light on the recent meeting 12 members of Congress had with Mexico President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and his entire Cabinet.
The visit to Mexico City took place last weekend. The delegation included members of the House and Senate, Republicans and Democrats alike.
From the Senate there was John Cornyn of Texas, Jerry Moran of Kansas, Mike Lee of Utah, Shelley Capito of West Virginia, Chris Coons of Delaware, Chris Murphy of Connecticut, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, and Peter Welch of Vermont.
From the House there was Cuellar of Laredo, Texas, Tony Gonzales of San San Antonio, Texas, Veronica Escobar, of El Paso, Texas, and Maria Salazar of Miami, Florida.
Cuellar reviewed the meeting in an audio interview with the Rio Grande Guardian International News Service.
“Overall, I thought it was a very good meeting that we had with the Mexican President and his Cabinet and I think this should help us move forward in many ways,” Cuellar said.
Cuellar said the format for the meeting was unusual.
“Usually you go (and see) a leader, a leader of a country. They’ll speak for a few minutes and then take one or two questions and that’s it. This was very different,” Cuellar said.
“It was like, in total about four and a half hours. That included about an hour’s working lunch.”
Cuellar said a topic would be brought up. First, a few members of the U.S. delegation would speak and then a Mexican Cabinet member. Then, at the very end, President López Obrador, who was taking notes, would address some of the issues brought up.
Cuellar said López Obrador was very diplomatic in his answers. He said that in public, the president can sometimes get very nationalistic. But, in this meeting, he was more measured.
“For example, he said the drug issue is a joint responsibility and (that) we need to work together and we want to work with you. And then he said, in a very diplomatic way (that) it’s very important that you don’t shift the whole blame on Mexico because, after all, we have got to look at what happens in the U.S., with consumption. So he was very, very diplomatic about it. He was very diplomatic on how he addressed it. He basically said, hey, don’t put the whole blame on us. He said it very diplomatic way but he was very clear. Don’t put the blame on us only.”
In the attached audio interview, Congressman Cuellar discusses the main topics that came up in the meeting, including fentanyl, the speed at which port infrastructure is modernized, energy, and water.
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