Mexican President Felipe Calderon is visiting President Obama at the White House on Wednesday. The two face a number of issues, some of which they are addressing publicly. Here are five of the challenges pundits say they should address. If Calderon misses anything, he'll have the opportunity to bring it up when he addresses Congress on Thursday.
- Figure Out Immigration NBC News' Athena Jones reports, "Immigration came up almost as soon as Calderon arrived for a welcome ceremony on the South Lawn this morning. After Obama spoke, calling the United States and Mexico 'not simply neighbors, bound by geography and history' but friends and partners, Calderon talked about common challenges the countries faced, including immigration and drug-trafficking, and about the need to start a 'new chapter of cooperation' and to combat discrimination."
- 'Rebuke' Arizona The Chicago Sun-Times' Lynn Sweet writes, "The U.S.-Mexico relationship is close, but the new Arizona state law -- where state law enforcement could demand that people produce papers (already opposed by Obama and Calderon) -- raises the question of how and when Calderon will deliver an Arizona rebuke. Calderon is under some domestic political pressure to say something while here." Calderon has done just that, criticizing Arizona and drawing sharp reaction from conservatives.
- Curb Drug Violence Time's Tim Padgett sighs, "perhaps we deserve some of the lecturing we're bound to get from President Felipe Calderón when he climbs Capitol Hill on Wednesday. He'll point out, as the Obama Administration has conceded, that much of the blame for Mexico's horrible narcoviolence lies with our insatiable demand for drugs and our lame-brained refusal in 2004 to renew a ban on assault weapons that are being smuggled into Mexico." But Padgett says Obama should give Calderone a tough talk insisting on police reform and "anti-poverty programs that give younger and poorer Mexicans economic opportunities beyond joining drug gangs."
- Advance Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement The Chamber of Commerce's Mark Esper beams, "innovation and creativity, which are both incentivized and protected by strong IP rights, are critical to creating jobs, spurring economic growth, and enhancing America's competitiveness. We applaud both presidents' efforts to expand [intellectual property] cooperation between Mexico and the United States. While Mexico has made great progress in recent years, more needs to be done to address a number of [intellectual property] issues, include a major effort to tackle piracy, as today's report by the Congressional Anti-Piracy Caucus makes clear. We particularly laud both presidents strong commitment to concluding this year an Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement."
- ...Watch Beyonce Sing? It's good to be the president. The Chicago Tribune's Katherine Skiba reports, "The Grammy award-winning superstar will perform Wednesday night on the South Lawn of the White House after a state dinner for Mexican President Felipe Calderon, the White House announced. She'll be joined by two Mexican performers known as Rodrigo y Gabriela. ... Wish you were at the state dinner? You may catch glimpses via a live-stream on the White House Web site, www.whitehouse.gov."