Mexico President Enrique Peña Nieto Visits California, Criticizes 'Unethical' Governors for Denying Immigrants Rights
On Monday, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto began his two-day visit to California.
According to the Mexican Embassy in Washington, D.C., the goal of the visit is to "strengthen ties between Mexico and California state officials, renew Mexico's commitment to Mexican communities abroad and promote business opportunities."
Peña Nieto's first move was to accept the invitation of California Gov. Jerry Brown to speak to hundreds of leaders, both Mexican and American, as well as immigrants at the Millennium Biltmore hotel in Los Angeles, Los Angeles Times reports.
"This is the other Mexico," he said.
In 2011, PewResearch reported that 83 percent of the over 14 million Hispanics living in the state were of Mexican origin, giving the state a U.S. Rank of 6.
"You're all welcome in California," Peña Nieto added.
Peña Nieto has not been to the U.S. in almost two years. According to Fox News Latino, this time around the Mexican president continued to speak about the need for immigration reform and acceptance of different cultures entering the country.
"We want to be a factor of cohesion, not division, with full respect for the sovereignty of the United States," he said Monday. "This, at the end, is about -- and only about -- a matter of justice for those who contribute so much to the development of the American society."
The Mexican president also criticized unnamed "unethical" governors who fight against undocumented immigrants.
"There are still states that have not evolved so much as California, that still skimp on recognition and, even worse, the rights of immigrants," Peña Nieto said. "Those who still believe and bet for the exclusion and discrimination or the rejection of diversity ... I only have one thing to say: the future, and a very near future, will demonstrate your ethical mistake. Time will show we're right."
Gov. Brown, who last visited Mexico in July, echoed Peña Nieto's request for acceptance.
"It wasn't very long ago that the governor of California was outlawing driver's licenses for people who were undocumented from Mexico," he said. "That's not the law anymore."
Peña Nieto's Tuesday schedule includes attending a luncheon in his honor hosted by Gov. Brown in Sacramento and speaking to the Legislature at the state Capitol, according to LA Times.
Follow Scharon Harding on Twitter: @ScharHar.
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