Jacobson: U.S.-Mexico relationship will survive ‘rough times’
MEXICO CITY — U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Roberta Jacobson last week emphasized that the bilateral relationship has survived — and thus will survive — any political or economic crisis after admitting that in her country’s electoral process “offensive” things are being said about Mexicans, EFE news agency reported.
She noted that in recent years, with the North American Free Trade Agreement, the bilateral relationship has become more mature, resistant and deeper, and will survive “rough times,” speaking Thursday Sept. 8 at an event organized by The Economist magazine in Mexico City.
Jacobson said that “there’s no doubt that there are things being said in this election that are ugly, that are offensive to Mexicans and contrary to the reality,” but she added that “there’s so much that is positive that’s happened in the relationship that it survives even if it’s tossed about a little bit.”
Jacobson refused to speculate about the impact a potential victory by Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump — who has called Mexican migrants “rapists” — would have on the relationship, adding that there are “very positive” things about the North American situation that will survive.
She went on to say that although the United States might leave NAFTA if Trump were to win the White House, nothing would change “on the ground” due to the integration that already exists, adding that “There may be rough times ahead for each country … but in the end we get back to business.”
She added that even if NAFTA, which went into effect in 1994 and which Trump opposes because he claims it harms the United States, were to be abrogated, the United States and Mexico will continue working together to improve competitiveness in the region.
The envoy said that things can only get better with agreements such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership and other accords with high standards, and “22 years of progress” in the U.S.-Mexico relationship cannot be undone.
She said that the election campaign is often marked by very heated rhetoric and admitted that such a situation may be difficult for other countries to deal with, but she expressed confidence that, in the end, the two nations will return to their normal trade situation.
Jacobson said that the current electoral season is “unprecedented,” but refused to comment to the media about the meeting between Trump and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, last week in the Mexican capital.