Friday, November 30, 2018

AMLO Is A Bit of Everything For Everyone

I don't tend to pay much attention to who attends presidential inaugurations, but it feels like AMLO's is about a diverse as you can get. And that's something he's making a big deal of. His choice as Foreign Minister, Marcelo Ebrard, keeps tweeting as he gets confirmations.

You have Mike Pence, Nicolás Maduro, Ivanka Trump, Daniel Ortega, (or someone close to him), Evo Morales, Miguel Díaz-Canel, Michelle Bachelet, governors, mayors, and former mayors of U.S. cities, there is Palestinian representation, Iván Duque, Jeremy Corbyn, and the list goes on.

At this particular moment, AMLO is a bit of all things to all people outside the country. He is the leftist who can influence Venezuela, he is the non-interventionist with regard to Venezuela, he is the pragmatist who can handle Donald Trump, he is the leftist who will help the poor, he is the pragmatist who won't radicalize economic reforms, he is center-left like Lula.

It will be very hard to be all these things and we know you can never tell until the person has been inaugurated. A lot of Latin American presidents have acted very differently from what was expected at the time of their election, which in some cases created serious rifts or even crises (e.g. Juan Manuel Santos and Lenín Moreno recently, with Carlos Menem and Alberto Fujimori in the past).

It is a positive sign, however, that he begins his term in office with a sense of universal goodwill from abroad. He will need it because so many of his challenges have international connections of some sort.


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