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Mexico's corruption referendum eye-roll

If your country had suffered decades of crippling corruption, wouldn't you want to prosecute those responsible? Of course you would. On Sunday, almost 98 percent of Mexicans who voted in a national referendum on this subject said, in so many words: "Yes, please prosecute the last five presidents for corruption!"

The catch is that turnout was a dismal 7 percent, meaning the plebiscite fell way short of the 40 percent turnout threshold required for its result to be binding.

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What We're Watching: AMLO's bittersweet victory, Boko Haram's leader is (maybe) dead, El Salvador's move towards crypto

Did AMLO win in Mexico's midterms? The governing Morena party of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador lost its two-thirds lower-house majority in Sunday's midterms, dealing a blow to the leftwing nationalist leader's bid to radically transform Mexico. Although Morena and its allies are projected to hang on to a simple majority in the lower house, winning as many as 292 of the 500 seats up for grabs, that two-thirds margin was crucial for López Obrador's ability to change the constitution, something he's threatened to do in order to carry out what he calls a "Fourth Revolution" that remakes Mexico's economy in the interests of the poor and working class. Still, López Obrador remains in a commanding position: Morena and its allies look to have picked up more than half a dozen state governorships, and they still control both houses of Congress. Most importantly, despite failing to tackle crime, corruption, or poverty since his election in 2018, the left-populist López Obrador remains immensely popular in a country where traditional conservative politicians are reviled. Chastened as he may be by the result, as he heads into the final three years of his six-year term, López Obrador isn't likely to give much ground to his rivals. Read our full write-up of the election and its implications here.

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Migrants on the move

"We are on pace to encounter more individuals on the southwest border than we have in the last 20 years. We are expelling most single adults and families. We are not expelling unaccompanied children." So said US Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas earlier this week. US Customs and Border Protection reports an average of 565 children traveling alone now crossing the border per day, up from 313 last month.

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Why Mexico's AMLO is still so popular despite rampant violence

"The message for the killers and for the drug cartels is very simple: 'You kill in Mexico, and nothing happens to you.'" Acclaimed journalist and Univision news anchor Jorge Ramos does not mince words when talking about the abject failure that has been Mexico's "war on drugs" over the last decades. And he pins much of the blame on the man who assumed office on a pledge to curb violence: Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. But despite his failure to follow through on a key campaign promise, López Obrador remains widely popular in Mexico. Ramos offers a theory for why that is during his interview with Ian Bremmer on GZERO World.

Watch the GZERO World episode: Can AMLO Live Up to Mexico's Critical Moment? Jorge Ramos Discusses

The road ahead for US-Mexico relations

With a new American president in office, US-Mexico relations face a turning point. Can Mexico's populist leader Andrés Manuel López Obrador, also known as AMLO, forge the same bond with President Biden as he did with former President Trump? And how will that dynamic impact immigration reform in the US. These questions come at a critical time for Mexico, as it scrambles to regain control of rampant violence and a raging pandemic.

Watch the GZERO World episode: Can AMLO Live Up to Mexico's Critical Moment? Jorge Ramos Discusses

Can Biden work with López Obrador on meaningful immigration reform?

Can President Biden work with Mexican president López Obrador to pass meaningful immigration reform for the first time in decades? Acclaimed journalist and Univision anchor Jorge Ramos thinks there is a path, but it requires a certain baseline understanding. "There has to be an immigration plan that includes the fact that one-to-two million immigrants are going to be coming every single year to this country. Those are the facts, like it or not." With tens of thousands of Central American migrants amassing just south of the US border, many living in squalid conditions, Ramos argues that Biden must act swiftly but also shrewdly. He spoke with Ian Bremmer on GZERO World.

Watch the GZERO World episode: Can AMLO Live Up to Mexico's Critical Moment? Jorge Ramos Discusses

Why Mexico’s president waited so long to congratulate President-elect Biden

Weeks after President-elect Biden was declared the winner of the 2020 US election, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO for short) was one of the last world leaders to congratulate him. In fact, he waited until December, after the Electoral College certified its vote, to join Russian President Vladimir Putin and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro in being some of the last world leaders to contact the President-elect. Acclaimed journalist and Univision news anchor Jorge Ramos explains why the Mexican leader waited so long and if the delayed felicitations bode ill for US-Mexico relations.

Watch the GZERO World episode: Can AMLO Live Up to Mexico's Critical Moment? Jorge Ramos Discusses

The unlikely “bromance” between Presidents Trump and López-Obrador

When leftist Mexican politician Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO for short) came to power, many predicted that his relationship with the far-right President Trump, who had won office largely on an anti-immigrant platform, would be rocky at best. And yet, the two got along swimmingly. Why?
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