United States–Mexico: The Convergence of Public Policy Views in the Post-9/11 World


Brandon Valeriano is an Assistant Professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago. His research focuses on international relations theory, interstate rivalry, and Latino foreign policy issues.
Matthew Powers is a graduate student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champagne in the Department of Political Science.


This article explores the state of public policy preferences between the United States and Mexico in the realm of foreign policy in the context of the post-9/11 world, democratic change within Mexico, and the immigration protests within the United States. Specifically, we will analyze the differences and possible convergence of public policy views on the issues of terrorism, immigration, free trade agreements, drug trafficking, and foreign policy. We find that although there are differences of opinion, particularly in the application of force in Iraq and on the benefits of free trade, there still remains a significant degree of positive convergence within the policy issues of terrorism, immigration, and drug trafficking. Although there are institutional impediments to progressive policy change, future relations between the United States and Mexico do not need to be contentious as long as the focus is on the similarities, rather than the differences, in public preferences between the populations of the two states.