Mexico’s President, Andrés Manuel López Obrador said on Saturday that he will not congratulate the winner of the US presidential election until the legal challenges are over, in a clear effort to avoid friction with Washington in the transition.
Democrat Joe Biden won the election on Saturday after his victory in the state of Pennsylvania put him above the 270 electoral college votes.
Mexico is the United States̵7; top trading partner, with more than $ 600 billion in two-way trade annually, and a bilateral relationship with its northern neighbor is by far the most important for Mexico.
“With regards to the US election, we will wait until all the legal issues have been resolved,” López Obrador, commonly known as Amlo, said at a press conference.
“I cannot congratulate this candidate or that candidate. I want to wait until the voting process is over.
Republican President Donald Trump has filed a series of lawsuits to challenge the outcome, but election officials in states across the country say there is no evidence of substantial fraud and legal experts. that Trump’s efforts are unlikely to be successful.
The Mexican president linked his caution to his own fraud allegations in two presidential elections he contested, in 2006 and 2012, before winning his third bid on. year 2018.
His reluctance to comment on the US results contradicts his congratulation to former Bolivian President Evo Morales last year despite the opposition’s claims of fraud in that re-election bid.
Mexican officials said the decision was made in a desire to avoid provoking Trump while he remained at the White House.
“Bolivia does not have a 3,000 kilometer border with Mexico,” an official said of the apparent contradiction. “It’s important to have a few months of peace and good neighborliness.”
In his remarks, Amlo said he had a good relationship with both Trump and former vice president Biden, whom he said he had known for a decade.
He needs to get to a good deal with Trump, whose term is expected to end on Jan. 20. A Biden presidency could reestablish relations that have cracked since Trump made his first decision to enter the White House, making Mexican migrants into rape and gunners and vowing to stop them with the border wall.
Under Trump, Mexico had to navigate abrupt requests to prevent illegal immigration or face trade tariffs.
By joining Trump’s immigration orders, however, Amlo forged an unfavorable relationship with each other in which Washington mostly avoids criticizing his economic policies.
“President Trump has great respect for us,” he said. “And we are very grateful that he did not interfere.”