October 8, 2019

The United States’ ambassador to Mexico has always played an important role in the bilateral relationship. The recent arrival of the new ambassador, replacing Ambassador Roberta Jacobson, who was thought to have played a positive role during her tenure, was well received. Such appointment formalizes the United States’ official diplomatic representation in Mexico. The new ambassador, Christopher Landau, is a prominent lawyer who is fluent in Spanish and has notable academic, professional and personal credentials. These characteristic are meaningful, because they serve as an indication of the importance of the bilateral relationship. In this case, the new envoy’s attributes are outstanding: Landau is a graduate of Harvard University, where he received a bachelor’s degree in Latin American Studies, as well as Harvard Law School, where he received a law degree with honors. He stood out as a lawyer, both in private practice as a partner at the international law firm Kirkland & Ellis, and working in the U.S. federal judiciary as a law clerk under Judge Clarence Thomas in the D.C. Federal Circuit Court of Appeals. Judge Thomas would later become Justice Thomas, a current member of the United States Supreme Court. Upon his appointment by President Donald Trump, Ambassador Landau identified border security, the fight against drugs and promoting trade as prominent challenges and priorities. He also stated that he would protect the sovereignty of the United States and guarantee enforcement of laws at the U.S.-Mexico border. Finally, he stated that he would promote cooperation with the Mexican people and with Mexican authorities. His initial presentations made a favorable impression, and as was the case with some ambassadors who preceded him, he is not only well-educated and prepared, but also charismatic and personable.

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