Memo From Middle America (Formerly Known As Memo From Mexico) | Oh No! – Not Another "Mexico-U.S. Inter-Parliamentary Meeting"?
June 17, 2009, 05:00 AM
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On Jun 5th-7th, Seattle was the venue for the annual "Mexico- U.S. Interparliamentary Group Meeting".

It's an annual meeting, of selected members of the U.S. Congress and the Mexican Congress, alternating between the U.S. and Mexico, supposedly to discuss issues of bilateral interest.

The 2009 confab was the 48th Annual Interparliamentary.

A year ago I reported on the 47th Annual Interparliamentary, held in Monterrey, Mexico. In that meeting, Brian Bilbray, of all people, promised his Mexican counterparts that we'd set up a bi-national group to manage (U.S.) immigration policy!

Hopefully, he's forgotten that by now.

At any rate, the interparliamentaries, which receive more media attention south of the border than they do here, frequently include a fair amount of gringo-bashing over immigration or drugs or some other point of contention. And usually the Americans wind up on the defensive.

So who attended this event, you may ask?

This year, the American delegation to attend the Interparliamentary was announced by Nancy Pelosi on May 5th (Cinco de Mayo). That was supposed to be symbolic. Hmmm.

So who did Nancy choose to send to Seattle?

The chairman of the U.S. delegation to the confab: Democratic Congressman Ed Pastor of Arizona.

Congressman Ed's immigration-related voting record has been evaluated as F- by Americans for Better Immigration.

Representative Pastor's sidekick was California Democrat Linda Sanchez. ABI gives her a career grade of F-, and a recent (2006-2009) grade of F.

(Representative Sanchez, by the way, holds the distinction of being the first unmarried congresswoman to become pregnant while serving in Congress. Hispanic family values, you know.)

Other representatives chosen for the Interparliamentary were:

  • Congressman Bob Filner , California Democrat Career and Recent Grade of F-.
  • Congresswoman Hilda Solis, California Democrat. Career grade of F-, recent grade of F.
  • Ciro Rodriguez, Texas Democratic Congressman, with a Career grade of F and a recent grade of D.
  • California Republican Congressman David Dreier. Career grade of B-, recent grade of A. (Congratulations).
  • Florida Republican Congressman Connie Mack, who has an ABI rating of A- (career) and A recent.
  • Michael McCaul, Texas Republican congressman, with a career rating of A- and recent grade of B+

California Democratic Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren wasn't originally chosen, but she wound up going. Her ABI rating is F.

Also accompanying the group was Jerry Weller, former Republican Illinois representative, whose career ABI grade was a B.

Also selected for the Seattle delegation was Luis Fortuno, the governor of Puerto Rico. Fortuno used to the "Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico", (the non-voting representative of the island territory to the U.S. House), and head of the Congressional Hispanic Conference  (a pale Republican version of the Hispanic Caucus). Party affiliation? Fortuno is both a Republican, and a member of the Puerto Rican Partido Nuevo Progresista, which advocates statehood for Puerto Rico.

Predictably, drugs, arms and immigration were on the Interparliamentary meeting agenda.

It's commonly reported in the media, and in Mexico, that 90% of the weapons used in the drug cartels come from the U.S. That's been debunked, but it's still accepted by many as an article of faith.

So of course, weapons were discussed at the Interparliamentary. But to calm the Mexican delegation down, Representative Pastor promised them that the U.S. Congress would approve CIFTA, the "Inter-American Convention Against Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition, Explosives and Other Related Materials". (Here is a critique of CIFTA by Gun Owners of America.)

As for immigration, Pastor also assured the Mexicans that Obama, the U.S. Congress, and the Hispanic Caucus were about to take care of the situation.

Oh, and that Mexico would be consulted on the matter of a U.S. "migratory reform". [Prevén en EU aval a pacto antiarmas, Siglo de Torreon, June 7, 2009]

Thanks, Representative Pastor, for protecting our interests in Seattle!

Upon conclusion of the confab, a headline in Mexico's Jornada read "Migratory Reform in the U.S. is Now Nearer: Legislators" [La Reforma Migratoria En EU Ya Está Más Cerca: Legisladores, By Andrea Becerril, Jornada, June 8th, 2009]. The subtitle read "Those who attended the Interparliamentary return with 'great expectations'".

Here, for your reading pleasure, is the opening paragraph of that article (translated by yours truly):

"The 'Obama Effect' was felt at the 48th Mexico-U.S. Interparliamentary Meeting, now that for the first time in many years, Mexican Legislators feel satisfied by the expectation that this same year a comprehensive migratory reform will take shape and that the additional resources for the Merida Initiative will soon be approved …"

The Mexican delegation included representatives of the PAN, the PRI and the PRD, parties which are usually at loggerheads but are on the same sheet of music when it comes to the subject of immigration.

Here's what the second paragraph said:

" The chief of the Mexican delegation, the PAN senator Luis Alberto Villarreal, the [PRI] president of the Foreign Relations Commission of the Senate, [and former foreign minister] Rosario Green, and the PRD members Silvano Aureoles y Raymundo Cardenas, were equally in agreement in affirming that there are great expectations that now, under the direction of Obama, the United States will approve the legislation that will benefit the more than 12 million fellow Mexicans who are[illegally] in the neighbor country of the north, but they added that they will be prudent."

What does that mean "they will be prudent?"

Quoth the PAN member Villarreal: "The worst thing we could do in these moments is to make noise, because that would help the anti-immigrant groups."

Ah, so Villarreal doesn't want Americans who are opposed to open borders to know what's going on, eh?

Too late!

Rosario Green, in an interview, said that

"What we said before my [American] colleagues is that an eventual [U.S.] migratory reform should include a paragraph in which it says that 'it is an obligation to respect the human rights of the migrants, independently of their migratory status´."

In other words, a permanent amnesty is what they want.

The former foreign minister had more to say on the subject. According to the article

"The ex-Chancellor insisted that the Mexican legislators do not want the [U.S.] Constitution to be modified nor to generate controversy, because the anti-immigrant groups will take advantage of that."

What "anti-immigrant" groups?

Well, according to Green, they are "the ones that have always opposed reform and that are now hurling messages of hate."

Why do we even have these Interparliamentary confabs anymore? It's just another opportunity for Mexican politicians to demand—and for American politicians to make promises to foreigners who aren't even their constituents.

As I pointed out a year ago, it's time to bring them to an end.

Why can't the 48th annual Interparliamentary be the final Interparliamentary? There's just no valid reason for American patriots to tolerate them anymore.

American citizen Allan Wall (email him) recently moved back to the U.S.A. after many years residing in Mexico. In 2005, Allan served a tour of duty in Iraq with the Texas Army National Guard. His VDARE.COM articles are archived here; his Mexidata.info articles are archived here and his website is here.