The Debate – Which route to reform? Migration at core of Kamala Harris’ Central America tour

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First Guatemala, then Mexico. It’s a tough maiden foreign assignment for the new US Vice President. Kamala Harris is on a mission to broach the root causes of why undocumented migrants risk it all to head north. How much pressure can Washington apply when her hosts squander or steal the aid that’s meant to offer an alternative? It’s not all about lofty development goals. 

The Biden administration may have reversed policies like locking kids in cages, but the message to migrants is still blunt: if you don’t have an invite, do not come. 

We pay particular attention to the chemistry with Mexico’s president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, a left-wing populist who proved agile at dealing with Biden’s predecessor. He too is entering a new era: his MORENA party mildly underperformed in last Sunday’s midterm elections and there too, there’s talk about root causes. The violence on the campaign trail illustrates just how much room for reform there is. Which direction for AMLO? Which direction for Mexico?

Produced by Charles Wente, Juliette Laurain and Imen Mellaz.