President Obama’s Latin American trip offers an opportunity for a new relationship with the region

Mimi Whitefield – The Miami Herald, 03/13/2011

As President Barack Obama prepares for his trip to Brazil, Chile and El Salvador this week, there is optimism in the region that his swing south will begin a new relationship — one that reflects the profound changes Latin America has undergone in the past decade.

But with a budget crisis looming in the United States and the possibility of a partial U.S. government shutdown by the end of the week if a stop-gap measure isn’t approved, the president’s trip, scheduled for Friday through Wednesday, could be delayed.

If the trip goes forward as planned, the Latin America that Obama will encounter is more confident, more politically diverse and healthier economically since adopting sometimes painful reforms.

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