December 8, 2007L Tone Down Attitudes Versus Immigration, Calderon Says

Tone down attitudes vs. immigration, Caldern says

The Associated Press
Tucson, Arizona
Published: 12.08.2007

MEXICO CITY President Felipe Caldern on Friday told Mexican consuls to the U.S. and Canada that they must work to “neutralize” anti-immigrant attitudes north of the border.

Caldern's instructions came two days after he accused U.S. presidential candidates of “swaggering, macho and anti-Mexican” posturing. He also warned the U.S. Congress not to impose conditions on a $1.4 billion anti-drug aid package.

On Friday, the Mexican leader asked his diplomatic representatives in the U.S. to participate in the public debate on immigration by appearing at public events, talking more to the media and working with nonprofit groups to promote Mexican immigrants' role in supporting the U.S. economy.

“The key is to neutralize this strategy of confrontation and discrimination that forms part of U.S. society's mistaken perception, and be able to newly focus arguments on the complimentary aspects of our economies,” he said.

Caldern said the increasingly hostile attitude toward Mexicans was “affecting our bilateral relationship” with the United States.