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Latin America/USA – Has Latin America Become a Foreign Policy Priority for the U.S.? (The Dialogue)

by Donna Shalala, Jim Kolbe, Peter Hakim, Rebecca Bill Chavez

The Dialogue writes: Legislators in the United States have been raising attention around political turmoil in Latin America, helping widen some of the U.S. Congress’ foreign policy focus to include more issues affecting the region, Axios reported this month. For example, Reps. Albio Sires (D-N.J.) and Joaquin Castro (D-Tex.) recently called on the Biden administration to monitor political violence during protests in Colombia, while U.S. Representative María Elvira Salazar (R-Fla.) introduced a bill to review Nicaragua’s free trade status amid a government crackdown against opponents. To what extent has there been a significant broadening of interests involving Latin America by the U.S. Congress, and what is driving this momentum? What role are U.S. legislators playing in positioning Latin America as a foreign policy priority, and which issues have taken center-stage? Is congressional pressure influencing the Biden administration’s strategy toward the region?

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