Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the Mexican president, told President Biden Tuesday that the U.S. should “regularize” migrants living and working in the United States. He said that conservatives would be “screaming all the way.”
Lopez Obrador had been making recommendations about immigration and the crisis at U.S.-Mexico borders. Obrador, who missed the Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles last June, recommended to Biden that he expand temporary work visas to ensure that there is no labor shortage.
Then, he appeared to address the issue of illegal immigrants already living in the U.S.
He did not say explicitly that he was calling to create a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants already in the country. However, he stated that he wanted to provoke outrage from conservatives who have been fiercely opposed to the amnesty proposals made by the Biden administration as well as other Democrats in Congress.
Lopez Obrador provided advice to President Biden throughout the day.
Talks between leaders of both countries were expected to include migration as a major topic. Biden spoke of tackling fentanyl, and the need to work together to end human trafficking.
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Biden stated, “But as we know, Mr. president, we need all countries in the region joining us in tracking the multi-billion-dollar smuggling business that preys on our most vulnerable including the 53 souls killed in a tractor trailer at San Antonio last month,”
In May, there were 239,000 migrants who encountered each other. This is a record high. The number of migrants who have crossed Mexico to reach the United States is likely to surpass that in Fiscal Year 2021 when more than 1.7million migrants were encountered.
Biden’s administration has focused its efforts on fighting “root causes” such as violence, climate change, and corruption in Central America. It aimed to make it a priority at the Summit of the Americas in Juni.
At the summit, the U.S. made a variety of commitments including more visas and refugee resettlements as well as greater “reunification” programs. There was also funding of hundreds of millions of dollars for humanitarian and development aid for refugees and vulnerable migrants in the hemisphere.